A Glimpse of Mongolian Reindeer Herders
One of the smallest ethnic groups in the world
In a remote forest at the heart of the Mongolian steppes, Erdenebat Chuluu roams the frozen forests looking for food for his reindeers.
The 55-year-old is a member of the Dukha ethnic group. They are reindeer herders.
This tiny community perpetuates the way of life of their ancestors who began domesticating the animals thousands of years ago.
Every day Chuluu releases his reindeer into the forests to graze and calls them back once their bellies are full.
He has been herding reindeer all his life, circling through a seasonal migration pattern dictated by their search for food.
The animals mean everything for this community. They provide food, tools, and transportation for the Dukha.
With less than 300 individuals, the Dukha are considered to be one of the smallest ethnic groups in the world.
They worship spirits of nature and their ancestors.
Shamans carry out rituals that send them into trances to find answers from the spirits ruling the forests.
Even if the modern world is slowly creeping into this isolated place, the herders believe the traditions will be carried on by the next generation.