Big American Bison Try Hard to Meeting in the Road NY

Big American Bison Try Hard to Meeting in the Road NY


The Largest Land Mammal in North America . With their gigantic heads, massive horns, and shaggy fur, bison are the largest mammal in North America and have long dazzled the imaginations of native peoples and American settlers.

At the start of the 1800s, about 60 million bison roamed the forests, plains, and river valleys from Alaska to Mexico. By 1889, only about 635 remained in the wild, and president Roosevelt’s administration added them to the protected species list. Today, thanks to educational and re-population efforts, wild bison numbers have swelled to about 20,500. They are considered “one of the greatest conservation success stories of all time.”

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The word “bison,” which means “wild ox,” has Latin, Proto-Germanic, and Middle English linguistic roots. There are two types of bison. The first carries the scientific name Bison bison bison, and they live primarily in North America. The second type is known scientifically as Bison bison bonasus, and they live mainly in Europe. 

 You may hear people call bison “buffalo” or “American buffalo.” Though common, it’s a bit of a misnomer because bison are a far-distant relative to actual buffalo and water buffalo that live in Africa and Asia. French Explorer Samuel de Champlain is thought to be the person who mistakenly labeled bison as buffalo when adventuring across North America in the 18th century. 

 In Europe, bison are also known as wisent. Though linguists aren’t 100 percent positive about the word’s roots, most agree it stems from a Slavic or Baltic term meaning “the stinking animal.” In Siouan languages, spoken by Lakota and Sioux peoples, the word for bison is “tatanka,” which translates to “he who owns us” or “big beast.”

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