New methods for integrated non-invasive genetic monitoring of northern semi-domesticated reindeer and wildlife based on high-throughput sequencing approaches

The project aims to produce powerful multiomic tools for non-invasive assessment of animal identity and relatedness, diet, and health based on genetic analyses of field-collected scat samples, and thereby enable more efficient surveillance and management of reindeer and wildlife in the North.

RemoTnitor will develop non-invasive molecular-genetic monitoring methods for reindeer, moose, and brown bear populations in the Norwegian High North. The three focal animal species are extremely mobile, and the populations at the northernmost eastern edge of Norway transverse the borders to neighbouring countries. Increased monitoring of animal species in this region is therefore vital for early warning of emerging diseases.

All work packages (WPs) employ high-throughput sequencing (HTS) technologies for inference: In WP1, we develop GT-seq panels enabling cost-effective SNP genotyping and identification of thousands of individuals based on field-collected scat samples. In WP2, we develop new multiplexed metabarcoding-based methods for inferring the diet and health status (parasites, pathogens, and gut microbiomes) of individual animals. WP3 focuses on developing universal all-in-one methods for estimating the diet and health of individuals based on metagenomic shotgun sequencing of non invasive "remote" samples. In WP4, we evaluate and validate the performance of the different methods, integrate information from the multiple lines of evidence, and develop applications for use in non-invasive monitoring and management of reindeer and wildlife populations.


  • Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO)
  • UiT – The Arctic University of Norway (UiT)
  • The Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA)
  • Reindeer herders

Project manager

Ingebjørg H. Nymo

Research Areas
Bacteriology, Bioinformatics, Animal health, Molecular biology, Wildlife, Parasitology, Virology