Bison Profile

 bison in history 2012

By Ray Hansen, content specialist, AgMRC, Iowa State University, [email protected].

Updated June 2012 by Malinda Geisler, AgMRC, Iowa State University.


2012,  No other mammal has a closer historical tie to the development of North America than its largest land animal, the bison, also commonly known as the buffalo. Once a prominent fixture on the vast plains of the United States and Canada, bison have survived over-harvesting and near extinction. Their numbers dipped as low as 1,000 head by 1900 but have since recovered. The U.S. herd is estimated at 220,000 bison (National Bison Association). Today, they can be found in all 50 states, in every Canadian province and in several countries overseas.

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