Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA
Portrait of a young bison keeping an eye on mom while cleaning its fur at sunset.
Bison are North America’s largest land mammal. Has a distinctive humped profile with larger forequarters and smaller hindquarters; these traits are more pronounced in males. The brown wooly pelage is thickest around the neck, extending onto the shoulders and back in males. Males also have larger horns, which are stouter and more curled; female horns are more slender with upward pointing tips. Calves are reddish. Hair is longer in the winter. The Endangered Wood Bison (B. b. athabascae) from western Canada is slightly taller, darker, and woolier, with a larger hump than the Plains Bison
The bison breeding season is July-August, gestation length is 285 days, and females have only a single calf with birth coinciding with spring greenup. Females leave the herd and lie down to give birth. The female fiercely defends the newborn calf. Sexual maturity is reached at age 2.
Habitat: Forests & woodlands, Grasslands & prairies, Meadows & fields
Range: Rocky Mountains, Western Canada, Alaska
Information Source: eNature.com