donner and blitzen
Lightning killed reindeer in apocalyptic proportions during a thunderstorm in central Norway, the Norwegian Environment Agency reports. The shocking event left 323 of the animals dead, including 70 calves. "We have not heard about such number before," agency spokesman Kjartan Knutsen told The Associated Press.
Reindeer are occasionally killed by lightning strikes, but seldom in such large numbers; Knutsen believes the reason so many perished at once on the Hardangervidda plateau is because reindeer huddle together in bad weather.
The incident could be the deadliest lightning strike in history, The Verge reports. In 2005, 68 cows were killed by a lightning strike in Australia, while in 1971, 91 people were killed after lightning struck their plane, causing it to crash.