It's bison week!
These are pictures from the last cold snap (wind chills ranging from -10 to -20). Bison are made to thrive in these temperatures, and you can tell they aren't too worried about it!
The top picture is Wilbur, our original herd bull. Wilbur is quite possibly the best bison bull ever, he's always the first through an open gate (when you WANT them to go through one) and otherwise just a pretty mellow guy.
Bottom left is Melissa (tag #171) wrinkling her nose to get a good sniff of what's going on around her. She is one of our "Idaho girls" that came from a horse trainer. Bison are sometimes used in place of cattle to train cutting horses because of their superior speed and agility. Here's a link to see what a cutting horse moving bison looks like!
Bottom right is a side by side of Boris (our newest bull, on left) and Wilbur (on right). Wilbur is going on 6 years old, and Boris will be 3 this spring. You can see the difference in size 3 years makes! We have always been told if you have multiple bison bulls, keep a couple year age gap between them. The age (and size!) difference helps to keep them from fighting to the death/or serious injury.
What does bison life look like on our ranch?
While our herd isn't fighting off wolves like they do in Yellowstone, or migrating hundreds of miles in search of food; we do try to keep life natural for them.
- Our bison are raised in open pastures for their entire lives, no feedlots.
- They only have access to an ever diversifying pasture and hay for winter feeding, no grain ever.
- We handle them in the most humane, low stress way possible. Our critters are pretty tame, relatively of course, but they are still extremely sensitive to people and changes in their routine.