The Caribou, also called caribou in North America, a large species of antelope with highly varied distribution, inhabiting tundra, sub-arctic, boreal, and mountain areas of northern North America. The name” Caribou” is derived from a combination of two languages, the Inuit (Eskimo language) and French word for” Caribou” – Portuguese. This includes both migratory and sedentary populations.
A large number of caribou herds inhabit tundra areas in Canada, Alaska, the United States, Russia, Finland, Norway, Mongolia, Russia, Poland, Germany, Switzerland, Denmark, and Spain. There are also a number of islands in the southern hemisphere, with the largest herds in the central and eastern parts of North America and in the southwestern part of South America. In addition, there are some isolated Caribou populations in the Pacific Ocean and in the Pacific Islands.
Caribou herds are social and reproductive groups, with females tending to lead sub-areas of the herds, with older females taking over the leadership of sub-areas when needed. There are about 35 sub-areas, with each one usually occupied by a single female. In addition, there are unbroken herds in arctic and sub-arctic environments. These caribou herds often have flocks of up to 1000 caribou. The young are born in the spring and summer, following which they stay with their mothers for the whole of the year.
Mother caribou gives birth to anywhere between eight and fifteen young during the year. The younger the baby, the less likely it is to survive because it has a very short attention span and becomes easily exhausted. This problem is accentuated if the young mother has already given birth to at least one baby, or if she has not been able to feed the young properly before giving birth to another. If a young female has not been fed well before she gives birth, her milk might not contain enough fatty acids to help nourish the young, causing these youngsters to become obese and unhealthy. Such a mother would then have an insufficient reserve of milk to nurse the young ones.
After a young mother caribou has weaned her brood, she stays with the young ones until they gain maturity. She then joins her herdsmen in hunting, following a pre-determined route to ensure her own safety and that of her young. Her role then is that of a nurse, caring for the young, monitoring their growth and development, acting as a mother for the young and teaching them proper discipline. When the herdsmen return to their camp, the young mother will stay with them until they find partners.
In almost all the cases, the young mothers to stay with their young until they are old enough to mate and start a family of their own. The younger they are when they are, the easier it is for them to mate with the young men of their own sex. It is common for young male caribou to mate with female caribou, especially during the summer months when the grass has not yet dried out completely. The mother caribou will nurse the young until they can fend for themselves, then she will assist them in finding partners of their own kind.