A Field Guide to the Prairie

Photo: Dave Wood
Bison bison
Length: Males: 305-380 cm (10-12.5 ft.); Females: 198-228 cm (6.5-7.5 ft.)
Habitat/Range: Bison were once common throughout the U.S. from the Appalachian Mountain range to the Rocky Mountain range. They almost became extinct in the late 1800's. Now, there are herds scattered throughout parks and reserves in the United States and Canada. They prefer the open country of the Great Plains.
Eating Habits: Bison are gregarious animals; males in herds separate from females and calves. Bison eat grasses and forbs.

The bison is a large cow-like animal with horns in males and females, a dark brown coat, and a short tail. Female's weight varies from 410-500 kilograms or 911-1111 pounds. Males' weight ranges from 725-910 kilograms or 1611-2022 pounds.


On the Prairie Field Guide Index

College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences
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