The pastoralists movement with their herds across the landscape is a reaction to the unpredictability of resource availability. Across Fennoscandia, the degree of reindeer herders’ mobility is highly variable.The movement of pastoralists with their herds is an adaptation to changing environmental conditions, and is shaped by both the animals’ behaviour and human decision-making. Mobility is threatened by fragmentation. Fragmentation of rangelands may increase rangeland degradation, because it increases concentration of both people and livestock. Mobility is, however, not only structured by access to the physical landscape, but also by the social landscape. Transforming traditional pastoral land tenure from commons to private may threaten the cooperative nature of nomadic pastoralists.
Fragmentation may thus have a negative impact on climate change adaptation: while environmental variability is predicted to increase with climate change, the nomads’ ability to respond by moving may be reduced. Similarly, by changing/reducing the cooperative nature of herding, land tenure changes may severely hamper the herders’ ability to deal with increased environmental variation.