"This is a real big deal," said wildlife biologist Craig Gardner. "If you read the papers from Dawson City in the early 1900s, this is how it used to be. This is what was common."
Trappers in the vicinity of the mouth of the Fortymile River noticed the caribou crossing where the river enters the Yukon.
Since biologists began a recovery plan in 1995, the Fortymile herd has more than doubled. The caribou population has grown from 21,000 in 1995 to around 46,000, making it the Interior's largest caribou herd.
Yukoners are celebrating the event. They haven't seen the Fortymile herd for decades.
A press conferences was scheduled in Whitehorse on Thursday.
"It's very exciting," said Dorothy Cooley, a wildlife biologist with the Yukon Department of Renewable resources. "We have elders who still remember thousands of caribou over here. It's quite a celebration story."
--Fairbanks Daily News-Miner