Get American Bison: A Natural History PDF

By Dale F. Lott

ISBN-10: 0520233387

ISBN-13: 9780520233386

American Bison combines the newest clinical details and one man's own adventure in an homage to at least one of the main amazing animals to have roamed America's large, vanished grasslands. Dale F. Lott, a uncommon behavioral ecologist who used to be born at the nationwide Bison diversity and has studied the buffalo for a few years, relates what's recognized approximately this iconic animal's existence within the wild and its bothered historical past with people. Written with strange grace and verve, American Bison takes us on a trip into the bison's prior and stocks a compelling imaginative and prescient for its destiny, providing alongside the way in which a helpful advent to North American prairie ecology. We develop into Lott's partners within the box as he acquaints us with the social existence and body structure of the bison, sharing tales approximately its outstanding actual prowess and engaging relationships. Describing the whole grassland neighborhood within which the bison stay, he writes concerning the wolves, pronghorn, prairie canines, grizzly bears, and different animals and vegetation, detailing the interdependent relationships between those population of a misplaced panorama. Lott additionally lines the lengthy and dramatic courting among the bison and local american citizens, and provides a shocking examine the background of the disguise hunts that added the coup de gr?ce to the already dwindling bison inhabitants in a number of brief years. This publication supplies us a peek on the wealthy and detailed methods of existence that developed within the center of the United States. Lott additionally dismantles some of the myths we now have created approximately those methods of existence, and in regards to the bison specifically, to bare the animal itself: ruminating, reproducing, and rutting in its complete glory. His portrait of the bison eventually turns into a plea to preserve its wildness and an eloquent meditation at the value of the wild in our lives. forty b/w pictures, 2 maps

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Extra resources for American Bison: A Natural History

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The bison pay the costs of striving for dominance when the benefits are high, and don’t when the benefits are low. 27 CHAPTER 3 Cow to Calf On the National Bison Range calves are born in April and May—spring fever season. The snow has melted and the earth is warming. The new grass growth’s vibrant green is eclipsing the brown, dried grasses of winter. The golden yellow of arrowleaf balsam root and the purple of lupine contrast intensely with the new grass. I have watched dozens of calves emerge into this idyllic world.

They seldom bellow unless they already have a cow, are trying to displace a bull that has one, or are in the midst of a dominance contest. Even so, the cows can’t help but hear them, and I have seen them react. One day I watched a closely tended but resistant cow standing quietly beside the tending bull. Her tail was clamped firmly over her vulva, she chewed her cud, her ears lay passively back, and she jumped away from the tending male’s attempts to mount. He was bellowing and glowering at a half dozen bulls standing in a semicircle around the tending pair.

The cow’s best shot at having many grandchildren is to have sons that can claim a cow just as this bull claimed her. If we assume “like father, like son,” he is the best candidate in the immediate circle—but the cow may well make him prove it again with another run through the herd. I always interpreted cows’ runs as simply what they did at a particular stage of estrus. The zoologist Jerry Wolff thought otherwise, and he gathered data showing that the lower the tending bull’s rank, the more likely it was that the tended cow would run.

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American Bison: A Natural History by Dale F. Lott

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