Pick the ‘fake news’ headline: 1) Scientists discover energy source of Rudolph’s nose; 2) Trump wants to starve Santa’s reindeer

Rudolph has a wonderful nose. An ingenious nose. Amazing ability. Tremendous energy. And brilliantly red.

If that sounds like praise from a certain orange-hued megalomaniac, consider this other shocking exposé: “Trump wants to starve Santa’s reindeer. Why, they are barely able to pull all that weight now! Who knows what will happen if all the funding flowing to scientists and universities for global warming is cut? Might have to cancel Christmas!”

Svalbard’s reindeer are much in the news lately due to a conveniently timed study declaring the animals are shrinking due to climate change. But a couple of new holiday-themed articles published Wednesday branch out in bizarrely different directions: the question is, which one is true and which is that new “there’s no such thing, unfortunately, anymore as facts” monstrosity known as fake news?

Take your guess below and then read on.

The truth is Wiggy Donald said neither of these things. But a team of researchers made the declarations about Rudolph – pretty much verbatim – after putting him on a treadmill to test the incredibly efficiency of his nose. (BTW, the scientists named him, but don’t definitely state he’s THAT Rudolph.)

In short, Svalbard reindeer have “an amazing ability to change the temperature of the air it inhales,” according to the article at forskning.no (link is to a Google Translate version in English).

“When it’s 40 degrees below zero in the air, the temperature is approximately 38 degrees or more when the reindeer inhales,” the article. “The reindeer’s ingenious nasal structure can therefore change the air temperature by an incredible 70-80 degrees in less than one second.”


A cross section of a Svalbard reindeer’s nose shows the interior has an unusual and strange structure. It is similar to a conch, which means the inner surface is very large. Photo by Mario Acquarone / NTNU.

That bigly adjustment is possible due to the nose’s “tremendous structure” that resembles a conch, the researchers state. Lab analysis of cross sections show Rudolph’s nose is indeed very red due to an enormously long inner surface area of nooks and crannies.

The researchers state the discovery may have practical applications such as allowing “industrial designers to create ventilation systems for homes and cottages in extremely cold climates.”

“This has probably been something at Santa’s workshop at the North Pole,” the article concludes (really).

Now about Trump wanting to starve Rudolph and his companions…

The article is published by World Net Daily, whose other current top headlines include “Reporter: Is Trump F—ing his daughter?” and “Whoopie: Celebrating Christmas ‘same as a women’s right to choose'” (subhed: “2016’s anti-Christian holiday silliness classifies reindeer as religious symbols”).

“The radical environmentalists are out in force this Christmas, scaring children by telling them that reindeer – the kind Santa uses to pull his magical sleigh on Christmas Eve – are getting weaker due to global warming,” the article declares.

The article is based on a factual study, but cites a climate change skeptic who claims the number of reindeer has increased and therefore “it is likely that the increase in the size of these herds and the competition for the food supply that exists in the winter led to the weigh loss. However, this conclusion doesn’t fit the current narrative.”

“Bottom line: There is no reindeer shortage,” the article concludes. Granted, the current population is high, but the researchers are concerned something similar to the disappearance of 400,000 reindeer from a peninsula in the Russian Arctic.

And, just for the record, if Trump has ever talked about reindeer, we’re having no success finding it with Google.