The bison is the heaviest land animal in North America, and is sometimes mistakenly called Buffalo. Despite the enormous size of the bison, they can still be pretty quick on their feet, sometimes reaching up to speeds of 40 miles per hour (65km). Bison usually travel in smaller bands but they come together in much larger herds during the summer, their mating season. Females give birth to one calf at a time after a 9-month gestation period. Bison feed on herbs, shrubs, twigs, but their largest feeds come from grasses found on the plains they graze. Before finally digesting their food, bison regurgitate their food and chew it as cud. Bison used to cover most of the Great Plains and North America, and were vitally important to Plains Indians, making bison their most important natural asset. Today, the bison population is rebounding, living largely on reserves and ranches where they are raised for their meat. The bison’s shaggy coat is so well insulated that when the snow settles, it won’t melt.
|Size||7 - 11.5 feet|
|Average Life Span||12-20 years|