Over 300 Reindeer have been found dead on a mountain plateau in southern Norway.
According to reports from authorities and local media, lightning is said to have caused the death of the animals making it the deadliest lightening strike ever recorded.
A thunderstorm hit the Hardangervidda mountain plateau on Friday when the incident is believed to have taken place.
It is home to an estimated 10,000 wild reindeer according to the Norwegian Wild Reindeer Centre and is a popular tourist destination which features one of the country’s largest glaciers.
Elin Fosshaug Olsø, a spokeswoman for the Norwegian Environment Agency, confirmed the incident, saying 323 reindeer were found dead with 5 of them put down due to injuries they had sustained.
“We believe all reindeer were killed as a result of one single powerful lightning strike, because of the way they were positioned. We have never experienced such a large number of reindeer killed by lightning at the same time before. This is as far as we know a unique incident.”
She added that all of the dead reindeer were found in a radius of just 50 meters (165 feet).
Friday’s incident in Norway involved a remarkably high number of dead animals, believed to be the highest number ever recorded.
A previous incident involving a large number of animals being killed by lightening happened in Australia in 2005 according to the Guinness World Records. About 68 cows were killed when a single lightening bolt struck a tree at a diary farm.
The deadliest incident involving humans happened in Peru, 1971. Lightning struck a flight causing the plane to crash, killing 91 people.