Hi Everyone

Welcome to each of YOU who joins us on this incredible journey!! Our mission is to help people who have a soft spot for buffalo come to know and love them—our country’s National Mammal!

Our FREE Buffalo Blog www.BuffaloTalesandTrails.com celebrates its first year, arriving every other Tuesday with a new Blog, News, Upcoming Events and Photos. Written by Francie M. Berg, teacher and author of 2 award-winning books about buffalo.

For Teachers and Students of American history, Buffalo Ranchers and Bison Experts, Native American youth and Traditionalists, as well as Parents and Grandparents, all coming together to celebrate buffalo. And if you live on far distant shores—we bring you virtual buffalo tours to enlighten and delight from your armchair! We love having YOU aboard!! Subscriptions are FREE. Just click www.BuffaloTalesandTrails.com and Subscribe.

Together, we’ll share history and the wonderful buffalo stories that never grow old, that are told over and over, around campfires, in classrooms and at family gatherings!

The Buffalo Conservationists—Part 1

In essence, the saving of buffalo focused on two major factors.

On the one hand were westerners, both Native American and whites, who saw what was happening to the buffalo and cared about saving them.

With boots on the ground, these people rescued, nourished and protected fragile buffalo calves until they multiplied into healthy and prolific herds.

Without them American bison would likely have gone extinct. There’d be no buffalo in North America today. It almost happened.

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Bison Meat: Delicious and Nutritious

“The meat that has ‘ping’ to it—the meat that satisfies.”

That is how Lakota hunters from the Cheyenne River Sioux tribe described the taste of buffalo to the missionary Thomas Riggs on the way to their last winter hunt in December of 1880.

For 15 years buffalo had been gone from their Great Sioux Reservation, due to settlement pressures from the east, but mysteriously they had returned and the older hunters were eager to taste their favorite meat again.

Snow fell almost continuously and the hunting party of 101—about half men and half women and children—followed the Moreau River valley west with buckboard wagons and extra pack horses. Some days they made only three or four miles in deep snow that crusted and grew deeper day by day.

The hunters grew excited that last day as they neared the Slim Buttes, where scouts told them the buffalo had returned.

They talked of how tired they were of eating porcupine, skunk, venison and badger meat. During their journey the party had killed and eaten 148 porcupines and 200 deer.

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Part 2—ITBC, 30 years—Yellowstone Bison Dilemma

From the time he learned of it, Robert “Robbie” Magnan director of the Fort Peck Fish and Wildlife Department in northeastern Montana was troubled by the annual buffalo slaughter of excess buffalo in Yellowstone Park.

It was not enough that the bison meat was distributed to Indian tribes in neat frozen packages.

Magnan and other founding members of the InterTribal Buffalo Council (ITBC) cherished the Yellowstone Park genetics that had flowed from free-roaming bison for more than a hundred years. They wanted those genetics in their own tribal herds.

Not quite the same as “always having lived wild” in Yellowstone Park. They knew that only a reported 23 buffalo survived poaching in the Park—back in the 1890s—and the wild Yellowstone pastures had been replenished by relatively tame buffalo from half a dozen sources, both US and Canadian. So not many were actually “pure.”

Still, the Yellowstone buffalo are special and many Native people deeply desire those genetics in their tribal buffalo herds.

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UPCOMING EVENTS

February 18, 2021. 2021 Gold Trophy Show and Sale.  Visit https://bisoncentral.com/gold-trophy-show-and-sale/ for details.

February 19-20, 2021. 2021 NBA Winter Conference will be held in Rapid City, South Dakota, with a virtual attendance option as well as an in-person one. Details are being finalized with the tentative meeting location being the Rapid City Ramkota hotel

February 20, 2021. Dakota Territory Bison Association Black Hills Buffalo Classic Simulcast Auction – Rapid City, SD. Details at https://www.dakotabuffalo.com/

March 5, 2021. Denver Mountain Parks Bison at noon MST. Alternative snow date, March 12, 2021. Located at Genesee Park; Golden, CO (exit 253 off I-70). Approximately 36 animals. Registration at 10:30 a.m. For further information, please contact Matt Brown, 303-710-8164 or mailto:denvermountainparks@denvergov.org. In case of inclement weather, please call 720-865-0900 to confirm auction.

March 11-13, 2021. Eastern Bison Association Winter Conference. Visit https://www.ebabison.org/membership-renewal-events/p/winter-conference for more details.

March 15. Science & Research Committee Prepares for Proposal Review. As the NBA Science and research Committee prepares to review up to 16 research proposals scheduled to arrive at the Center of Excellence for Bison Studies in March, four new members have been added to the committee roster to provide additional expertise and insight. New NBA members on the Committee include Corissa Busse of South Dakota, Jeremy Ruhter of Illinois, Joe Graham of Texas and Dr. Margaret Parker of USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service office in Colorado. The committee met yesterday to prepare to review the proposals due to be submitted by March 15th. A total of 36 letters of intent were submitted to the Center in December. The Center’s Board of Directors conducted an initial evaluation on the proposals and identified 16 to be invited to submit full proposals.

March 20, 2021. Missouri Bison Association 2021 Spring Sale. Visit http://www.mobisons.org/ for details.

April 9 – 11, 2021. Minnesota Bison Association’s Annual Education Conference and Annual Meeting at the Round Lake Winery in Round Lake, Minnesota. Visit mnbison.org/events for details.

June 27-30, 2021. NBA 2021 Summer Conference Hosted by the Rocky Mountain Bison Association. Join the NBA for it’s 2021 summer conference at Little America in beautiful Cheyenne, Wyoming! Hosted by the Rocky Mountain Bison Association, the 2021 Summer Conference will feature great bison feasts, top-notch networking opportunities, education on topics pertinent to the bison business, and at least two working bison ranch tours in the Cheyenne area. Please mark your calendars for this great event and don’t miss out on what’s sure to be the summer’s biggest bison get together. Please save the date and we hope to see you there!

NEWS ARTICLE
Red Sleep Mountain Range Returned to Flathead Reservation

Red Sleep Mountain Range Returned to Flathead Reservation

On Dec. 27, President Donald Trump signed into law an act that returns “all land comprising the National Bison Range including all natural resources interests and appurtenances of that land to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT).”

The Act further states that this restored land shall be a part of the Flathead Indian Reservation, administered as tribal trust land and managed by the Tribes. This includes all bison on the range, as well as all buildings and structures located on the land.

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Author
Francie Berg


Assistant
Ronda Fink

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