10 Fun Facts about Perch

Here are some fun facts about Finland’s national fish

What do you known about perch (Perca fluviatilis)?
It’s a fish?
And here are some more fun facts about perch.

10 Fun Facts about Perch

1. Perch is Common in Finland

Perch is not too picky fish. It thrives in lakes, ponds, rivers and coastal waters. Therefore perch are found throughout the country, with the exception of the northernmost part.

2. Perch is Easy to Recognize

Perch is quite easy to recognize thanks to its red fins and dark stripes on its side.

3. What Do Perch Eat?

Small perch eat zooplankton. As perch grows, it also eats insects, benthic organisms and other fish.

4. Perch is “Ahven” in Finnish

In Finnish, perch is called “ahven”.

5. Perch is Finland’s National Fish

Perch is Finland’s national fish.

6. Perch is a Common Catch in Finland

If you go fishing in Finland, your first catch might be perch. The total catch of perch by recreational fishermen is usually over 10 million kg (22 million pounds) a year

7. How to Catch a Perch?

The most common methods of fishing in Finland are angling with a hook and line, spinning, fishing net and ice fishing (in winter).

8. How Big is Perch?

Perch grows quite slowly. Perch can be 20 years old, weight 3 kg and be over 50 cm long. But if you catch a perch in Finland, most often the weight is less than 0.5 kg and the length is about 15 to 35 cm.

9. Finland’s Biggest Perch

The biggest perch caught in Finland weighted 2.87 kg. It was caught in the Åland islands in 2010.

10. Perch is a Tasty Fish

Perch is a great to eat. It can be fried, smoked or grilled. In Finland perch is also used for traditional food called “kalakukko”, which is a bit like a round rye bread filled with fish.

More info about perch:
Fishing in Finland
Pro Fish ry (in Finnish)
Federation of Finnish Fisheries Associations (in Finnish)
Image by Pro Kala ry

Experience the Magic of the Northern Lights

Watching northern lights is one of the coolest things to do outdoors. And one of the coolest places to experience the magic of the northern lights is definitely Finnish Lapland!

Watching northern lights is one of the coolest things to do outdoors. And one of the coolest places to experience the magic of the northern lights is definitely Finnish Lapland!

Experience the Magic of the Northern Lights in Lapland

Northern lights can be seen near the magnetic poles of the Earth. This belt around the magnetic pole is called auroral oval. Finland is located on the southern rim of the arctic auroral oval. So it’s basicly possible to see northern lights anywhere in Finland.

Especially during geomagnetic storms the northern lights can be seen in Central Finland, and even in Southern Finland. But this is quite rare. The further north you are, better changes you have.

On average, you can see the northern lights in southern Finland only once a month. In Lapland, however, the chances of seeing the northern lights improve significantly. On a dark and cloudless night, the northern lights are visible almost every other night. And in the northernmost parts of Finland, for example in Kilpisjärvi, the chances of seeing the northern lights are 75%.

When is the Best Time to see the Northern Lights?

Northern lights are caused by the solar wind. This phenomenon occurs throughout the year. So northern lights can be seen anytime of the year, right?
Yes sure, if it’s dark enough.

To be able to see the northern lights, the night must be dark and preferably cloudless. The northern lights occur fairly evenly throughout the year, but according to statistics, in spring and autumn it is slightly larger than in winter and summer. Considering the Finnish winter weather, the best times in Lapland to enjoy the northern lights standing outdoors are March and early April.

And what time you should be standing outdoors? The best time to see the northern lights is midnight and a couple of hours before and after. But you don’t have to wait for the night. In the middle of winter in Lapland it is dark almost all day. So when the weather is cloudless and it’s dark enough, don’t forget to look up. You might get to experience the magic of the northern lights!

Finnish Meteorological Institute
Image by Rayann Elzein / Lapland Material Bank

Beauty of Finland – Winter Evening in Finland

Winter landscape in Southern Finland

Here is a few photos of a winter landscape in Vantaa, in Southern Finland.
Winter is one of the four seasons in Finland.
Winter is also the longest season.
If you are interested to know more,
here are 10 fun facts about winter weather in Finland.
Or you can find out how cold is winter in Finland?
Or how snowy is Finland?

Winter evening in Finland
Winter evening in Finland
Winter evening in Finland
Winter evening in Finland
Winter evening in Finland

10 Fun Facts about Reindeer

What do we know about these cute semi-domestic animals which live in Finnish Lapland? Here are some fun to know facts about reindeer

What animal comes to your mind when you think of Lapland?
Reindeer, am I right? But what do we know about these cute semi-domestic animals which live in Finnish Lapland. Here are some fun facts about reindeer!

Fun Facts about Reindeer

1. Reindeer Roam Freely in Finnish Lapland

In Finland, reindeer can roam freely almost anywhere in Lapland. Reindeer’s living area of 122 936 square kilometers covers 36 % of Finland’s land area.

2. More Reindeer Than People in Lapland

The population of Lapland is about 180 000. The number of reindeer is about 200 000. So in Lapland there are more reindeer than people!

3. Reindeer are Born in Summer

Reindeer are born in May or early June. Summer is the warmest time of the year and there is also plenty of food available, so the newborn have a bit easier start for life.

Newborn reindeer weights around 5 kilograms, but gains weight quickly thanks to mother’s nutrious milk.

4. Reindeer Can be Dark or All White

Color of the reindeer varies from dark to all white. Reindeer are fairly small. Height at the withers is 90-120 cm. Male reindeer weighs 90-180 kg. Female reindeer is a bit smaller and weighs 60-100 kg.

Reindeer live usually about 10-15 years, but can live as old as 20 years.

5. Reindeer Grow New Antlers Every Year

Reindeers drop their antlers and grow new ones every year. Reindeer antlers are the fastest growing bones in the world. They can grow 2 cm per day.

The antlers of a male reindeer can weigh up to 10 kg. Female reindeer also grow antlers, but smaller ones than male. Reindeer are the only female deer in the world that grow antlers.

6. Reindeer are Used to Harsh Winter Conditions

Reindeer are made for living in harsh winter conditions. Their hooves spread wide which helps moving also in a deep snow. Their thick fur keeps warm during cold winter. The outer hairs of the fur are hollow, which improves insulation and gives buoyancy when crossing a river.

Reindeer’s eyes are very sensitive to ultraviolet light, which enhances vision in the dark. Their excellent sense of smell helps to find food in winter. Reindeer can smell foor even under a meter-thick layer of snow.

7. Are Those Little Drops of Chocolate?

Have someone dropped some chocolate balls in the forest? Unfortunately not.
If you see a pile of small brown ball in nature, they could be reindeer droppings. They look like chocolate ball, but don’t taste them. You will be hugely disappointed!

8. Who is the Fastest?

If people can compete in something, they usually do. So why not race with reindeer. The first reindeer races in Finland were held in 1932.

The fastest reindeer compete against each other in competitions every winter. In the fastest class, the reindeer must be able to run 1 kilometer in less than 1 minute and 19 seconds. So the average speed must be more than 45 km/h (28 mph).

Naturally Santa’s reindeer are not allowed to race. that wouldn’t be fair as Santa’s reindeer are so fast.

9. Reindeer are Very Social

Reindeer are very social animals. They live together, eat together and rest together. A group of reindeer is called a herd (tokka in Finnish).

If a reindeer lifts its white tail while running, it’s warning others about a danger.

10. Reindeer Make a Clicking Sound

Did you know that reindeer make a clicking sound when they walk. This is caused by an ankle tendon. The clicking sound helps the reindeer to follow each other also in the dark.

Reindeer in the meadow
Reindeer in the meadow. Image by Anna-Leena Jänkälä / Lapin Materiaalipankki

More info:
Visit Lapland
Santa Claus Reindeer Resort
Featured image by Juha Kauppinen / Lapin Materiaalipankki

10 Fun Facts about Finnish Forests

Forests are very important to Finns.

Forests are important to Finns. Here are some fun facts about Finnish forests.

Fun Facts About Finnish Forests

1. Finland is the Most Forested Country in Europe

Forest areas cover about about 75 percent of Finland’s area. This makes Finland the most forested country in Europe.

2. About 13 % of Finland’s Forests are Protected

There are 2.94 Million hectares of protected forests in Finland. This means that about 13 percent of Finland’s forests are protected.

3. Finland’s National Tree is Birch

Silver Birch is Finland’s national tree.

4. Pine is the Most Common Tree in Finland

In Finland, there are about 30 domestic tree species. Most common are pine, spruce and birch. Pine is the most dominant. About 65 % of Finland’s forests are dominated by pine.

5. Over 100 Million Tree Seedlings a Year

Finnish forests keep growing. About 150 000 000 tree seedlings are planted in Finland every year.

6. Finnish Forests are Full of Berries

In Finnish forests grows about 50 varieties of wild berries. Of these, 37 are edible and about 20 are suitable for picking. The total amount of berries in Finnish forests is estimated to be over 500 million kg a year, but just about 3-10 % are picked.

7. Finnish Forests are Made for Mushroom Hunting

Finnish forests are great for mushroom hunting. The total yield of edible mushrooms in Finnish forests is estimated at 1000 million kg a year.

8. Bear is the King of the Finnish Forest

Brown bear is Finland’s national animal. In Finnish, bear is “karhu”. It is also referred as the king of the forest (metsän kuningas in Finnish) as it’s the biggest predator in the finnish forests.

9. Tapio is the God of the Finnish Forest

According to Finnish mythology, the god of the forrest was called Tapio. He ruled the forest with his wife Mielikki. As the bear was the biggest animal in the forest, it was sometimes thought to be a manifestation of Tapio.

10. Finns Live Near the Forest

Although most of the Finns live in cities, they haven’t moved too far from the forest. On average, Finns live about 700 meters from the nearest forest.

Forest Finland
Arktiset Aromit