The Reindeer Academy

Our mission statement at Blithbury Reindeer Lodges is "to advance and share the knowledge of the history and husbandry of reindeer - to both the public and other reindeer owners in the UK."

blithbury reindeer lodge

Steve Swinnerton, widely know across the UK as the Reindeer Man, has been training and breeding Reindeer for over 30 years.  His knowledge of Reindeer and Reindeer husbandry is unrivalled and he is contacted regularly by vets, zoologists and farm owners across Europe for advice on reindeer health and welfare.

Steve has worked extremely close with the Sami, the cultural group indigenous to Scandinavia who manage reindeer in the wild. He has developed strong links with the Sami community and is one of the very few non-Sami accepted by this culture and is even approached by them for Reindeer husbandry advice.

We launched the Reindeer Academy in early 2017 to enable Steve to share his wealth and knowledge with others.

We offer different levels of courses from Basic through to Advanced and everything in between.  We also offer bespoke, tailored courses to meet the specific requirements of individual companies, Zoos and Vets!

Course content varies throughout the year to coincide with the ‘Reindeer Year’ and their specific requirements. The courses are a combination of theory-based learning with a hands-on element included, to give delegates first-hand experience in working with and handling the Reindeer.

reindeer academy

Course content includes, but is not limited to the following:

  • General Husbandry; Health Checks, Worming, Vaccinations and First Aid
  • Indoor stock keeping; Why and When
  • Land Management; Land Rotation, Field Equipment
  • Feed and Moss; Feed, Supplements, Poisonous Plants
  • Rutting Season and Breeding; Successful Breeding, Bull Management
  • Antler Management
  • Halter Training
  • Sleigh and Harness Preparation (seasonal)
  • Christmas Preparation (seasonal); Do's and Don'ts


If you would like to enquire or book onto any of the above ‘Reindeer Academy’ courses, please email us directly through


Note: Dates are subject to change. In the event of bad weather, outdoor training will be held in one of our indoor barns.

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