Of course, we all know reindeer power Santa’s sleigh, but here are a few other interesting facts about these animals:
- Reindeer or caribou are the most domesticated members of the deer family. In northern Europe, they have been domesticated for centuries, providing meat, milk, clothing, and transportation.
- In Europe, caribou are called reindeer, but in Alaska and Canada, only the domestic forms are called reindeer. All caribou and reindeer are the same species, but there are seven subspecies.
- The first reindeer to be born in the U.S. arrived on May 31, 1929, in North Beverly, Mass.
- A reindeer can travel 40 miles a day, pulling twice its own weight on a sled.
- Montgomery Ward introduced Rudolph, the ninth reindeer, on Dec. 25, 1939. The song “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” appeared on the music charts nearly a decade later Nov. 25, 1949 and became the musical hit of the holiday season.