Yamal Peninsula

Yamal Peninsula

The Yamal Peninsula (полуо́стров Яма́л), located in Yamal-Nenets autonomous district of northwest Siberia, Russia, extends roughly 700 km (435 mi) and is bordered principally by the Kara Sea, Baydaratskaya Bay on the west, and by the Gulf of Ob on the east. In the language of its indigenous inhabitants, the Nenets, "Yamal" means "End of the World".

The peninsula consists mostly of permafrost ground and is geologically a very young place—less than 10,000 years old.

In the Russian Federation, the Yamal peninsula is the place where traditional large-scale nomadic reindeer husbandry is best preserved. On the peninsula, several thousand Nenets and Khanty reindeer herders hold about 500,000 domestic reindeer. At the same time, Yamal is inhabited by a multitude of migratory bird species.

Yamal holds Russia's biggest natural gas reserves. The Bovanenkovskoye deposit is planned to be developed by the Russian gas monopolist Gazprom by 2011-2012, a fact which put the future of nomadic reindeer herding at considerable risk.

On the peninsula in the Summer of 2007 the well preserved remains of a 10,000 year old mammoth calf were found by a reindeer herder. The animal was female and approximately six months old at the time of death.


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