BISON are the largest North American land mammal and once roamed the continent in the tens of millions. America's only continuously wild population, numbering approximately 4000 lives lives in and around Yellowstone National Park. The only bison with a continuous history of being wild and unfenced. Yellowstone bison are both behaviorally and genetically unique.
Wild bison had a dangerous brush with extinction at the turn of the 20th century, when their numbers plummeted to less than 25 individual animals who survived in the park's remote Pelican Valley.
The bison (Bison bison) is the largest land mammal in North America. In a typical year, more than 3,000 bison roam the grasslands of Yellowstone National Park. Bulls are more massive in appearance than cows, and more bearded. For their size, bison are agile and quick, capable of speeds in excess of 30 mph. Each year, bison injure park visitors who approach too closely.
Most animals in Yellowstone are subject to different management goals when they leave the park. Bison require special attention because many have been exposed to the bacteria that causes brucellosis, a disease that also infects domestic cattle. Yellowstone has worked with the state of Montana and other federal agencies to develop a plan for managing the bison population in a way that protects both its wild and free-roaming characteristics and the health of Montana cattle.
Thanks for your contributions to this thread, June! The cattle organizations would have people believe that bison carry and spread brucelliosis. This is not true. The non-native cattle brought it to this country and elk are carriers and I think cattle too. There is NOT one documented case where bison have spread the disease. I am going to borrow one of the pictures within the link you posted to show people the stupidity of ranchers wanting all that land for cattle to graze on! There is so much room for all animals....and it is PUBLIC lands so how they are getting away with wanting to prevent wild horses, bison, etc from roaming/eating there, by rounding them up!
Oh you posted those beautiful pictures, June right when I was posting. lol They are beautiful. Did you know that the baby buffs stay red-orange until they are about 6 months old....then they turn chocolate brown.
*By the Numbers
The last wild buffalo populations are currently estimated at fewer than 4,600 individual animals, living in and around Yellowstone National Park. Wild bison are ecologically extinct throughout their native range in North America.
Total Buffalo Killed: 261
Buffalo Released from Capture:
Held for Government Experiment:
Died In Government Trap:
Miscarriage in Government Trap:
State Hunt: 25
Treaty Hunts: 218
Unknown Hunts: 5
Shot by Agents: 3
Highway Mortality: 7
Cause of Death Unknown: 3
Total Killed in Previous Years
Total Killed Since 2000: 4,256
*includes lethal government action, trap-related fatalities, quarantine/experiments, hunts, and highway deaths