Alougoya

Visit to Evenki herders in China – A Sámi Herders Perspective

June 11, 2018 • Philip Burgess

Issát Turi is a Sámi reindeer herder, one of the authors of the award winning EALLU book and has been working with and for the International Centre for Reindeer Husbandry for many years. He also accompanied Anders Oskal, Mikhail Pogodaev, Inger Anita Smuk, Juoksa Smuk and Elen Sara Sparrok after the Gourmand Awards to Inner Mongolia, to the Evenki village of Alouguya, China as the ICR-WRH team visited with Evenki herders. Below is a brief summary of a conversation with him now that the ICR / WRH team are back in Sápmi.  

Of course reindeer herding on the tundra and the taiga are very different things. For the Evenki, their economy is totally different. We depend on meat production, whereas Evenki in China use the herds to produce medicinal products from antlers and there is some small milk production. There’s a big market for these products in the Far East. They have challenges to recruit young herders of course, as many of the herds are quite remote and are in tough places to live. Their herds are now inside a recently created national park and this has brought new challenges. Local Evenki are no longer allowed to hunt inside the borders of the Park and hunting is a big part of their livelihoods. The rules of the National Park have also meant that herders are not allowed to carry any weapon, even a bow and arrow, to protect their reindeer from predators. Bears are especially numerous in the park and are taking  a lot of the reindeer calfs. Herders are allowed to have a dog but herders told us that the dogs don’t help so much. 

See a new photo gallery from the ICR / WRH team visit to Alouguya below

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ICR/WRH Visit Evenki Reindeer Herders in Aoluguya, China. See Photo Gallery

June 4, 2018 • Philip Burgess

After the stunning victory of overall  ‘Best in the World’ Foodbook for the EALLU food book, a smaller delegation from the International Centre for Reindeer Husbandry (ICR) and the Association of World Reindeer Herders (WRH) made their way north to the town of Genhe, then to the village of Aolouguya to meet once more with their Evenki herding compatriots. The ICR/WRH delegation consisted of Anders Oskal, Mikhail Pogodaev, Inger Anita Smuk, Issat Turi, Ellen Sara Sparrok and Juoksa Smuk. 

WRH attended meetings and a welcome dinner with the Mayor of Genhe, Zhaomin Hu. Genhe is a sizeable city  in the far northeast of Inner Mongolia, and is the only region with reindeer husbandry which is centred on the Evenki reindeer herding village of Aoluguya. Genhe and Alouguya was the location of the 5th World Reindeer Herding Congress

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Shanghai Daily Report on China’s Reindeer Herders

October 9, 2014 • Philip Burgess

Evenki Herder in China

There are not many stories out of China that are about the Evenki reindeer herders that are still practising reindeer husbandry in the North East of the country. The Shanghai Daily has just carried a story on the reindeer herders of China, who number in the tens.

HOHHOT, Oct. 7 (Xinhua) — Soon, tribesman Gu Wenqiang will have to bid farewell to his herd of deer, leaving his small shack tucked away in the lush green forests of the Greater Khingan Range.

After more than a month of tending the herd of reindeer, the 36 year old will soon drive from his temporary shelter and return to his hometown of Aoluguya Ewenki located 50 km away. It’s an occurance that’s happening more frequently these days.

 

For Gu and others from the Aoluguya Ewenki tribe, dubbed “the last hunting tribe of China,” such trips have become routine following the tribe’s relocation to a township near Genhe City, north China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, from the mountain forests eleven years ago. For a decade, nomadic life has been the only choice to keep their ancient culture alive.

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China Daily Posts Extensive Article on Evenki Reindeer Herders of Aoluguya

October 21, 2013 • Philip Burgess

Maria SuoChina Daily, the widest print circulation of any English-language newspaper in the China (over 500,000 copies per issue, of which a third are abroad) has just published an extensive article on the Evenki herders of Aoluguya, near Genhe, in Inner Mongolia. The article features m,any of the same people who were active participants and attendees at this years 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress which was held on their territory for the first time. The article outlines the struggles this reindeer people have faced since their relocation from the forests closer to the city of Genhe and the loss of their rifles. The Congress is mentioned in the article as is the Aoluguya Declaration. With only 20 families remaining to live with their reindeer, the future for the livelihood is painted as being rather bleak in this article.

You can read the article below, or on the China Daily website here.

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Aoluguya Declaration from World Reindeer Herders Congress Published

October 17, 2013 • Philip Burgess

The culminating document from the World Reindeer Herders’ Congress is the final Declaration. Following the completion of the 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress in China, the final Declaration from this Congress has now been released.

The Declaration is an extremely important document for reindeer herders worldwide and represents in words their unique cooperation and also gives guidance to the priorities for the Association of World Reindeer Herders over the next four years.

This time around special attention was paid in the Declaration to the challenges facing Taiga reindeer husbandry and notes that taiga reindeer herding is under a threat of disappearing in China, Mongolia and such regions of Russia as Irkutskaya Oblast, Sakhalinskaya Oblast, Buryatia Republic, Khabarovsky krai, Tuva Republic, Amurskaya Oblast and others, and that the situation is still critical and needs urgent attention. The Nomadic Herders project was highlighted as having an important role to play in this critical situation. Other key themes included communication and information, the health of reindeer herders, globalisation and collaboration, pastures and biodiversity, youth, knowledge , research and education. You can read and download the full declaration below (in English)

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Open Invitation to the 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress

April 16, 2013 • Philip Burgess

5th world reindeer congressThe 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress will be held this summer (July 25-28) in Alougoya in the Genhe region in Inner Mongolia in North Eastern China. This is the first time that the Congress, which brings reindeer herding peoples from around the world together every four years. The event will be hosted by Evenki herders who are China’s only reindeer herding peoples.

The Congress is organised by the Association of World Reindeer Herders (WRH) in cooperation with the International Centre for Reindeer Husbandry. International cooperation in reindeer husbandry in modern times dates back to 1993 with the Reindeer Peoples’ Festival in Tromsø, Norway. Previous congresses have been held in Nadym, Russia, Inari, Finland, Yakutsk, Russia and Kautokeino, Norway.

Open invitation to the 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress

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