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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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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5th World Reindeer Herders Congress – Programme & Agenda Now Available

June 18, 2013 • Philip Burgess

5th world reindeer congressThe preliminary programme for the 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress, to be held in Aoluguya, Genhe County, Inner-Mongolia, China 25th – 28th of July 2013, is now available and can be downloaded here, or from the Document Centre.  The Congress programme is an event filled week of scientific, cultural and organisational activities, and is being held in China for the first time.

More information about Genhe can be found here, about this years Congress here, photos from the previous Congresses here, and the registration page can be found here.


Welcome to Genhe! A Primer on the 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress Venue

April 25, 2013 • Philip Burgess

Lets meet in GenheThe 5th World Reindeer Herders Congress will be held in Genhe / Alougoya between July 25-28 and preparations for this unique event that brings reindeer herding peoples together from around the world are ramping up. This is a good time to revisit the presentation by Mr Sa Guowen, Secreatary General of the Genhe Municipal Party Comittee to the World Reindeer Herders Congress in Kautokeino, 2009.

Genhe is in North East China in the inner Mongolia region. A large district of over 20,000 km2, it is also home to over 200 Evenki herders, making it among the world’s most southerly regions of reindeer husbandry, with much in common culturally with herders in Mongolia and in the Baikal region of Russia.

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World Reindeer Herders Congress in July – Revisit the Congress in Yakutsk, 2005

February 26, 2013 • Philip Burgess

The World Reindeer Herders Congress is going to be held in Genhe/Alougoya in July of this year, the first time that it will be held in China, home to a small number of Evenki herders. The Congress is held every four years and in 2009 was in Kautokeino, Norway. The Congress is a unique cultural and political event that brings together reindeer herders, scientists, politicians and more together.  The Congress generally has an academic programme, a political programme and of course multiple cultural events. Details on the 5th Congress will be posted here as they become available. See a clip from the Yakutsk Congress below,