New Threat to Buffalo—Mycoplasma bovis

A recent New York Times article by Mitch Smith describes the disaster that has come to one Native American rancher in South Dakota who has worked 30 years to build up his buffalo herd.
He reported that Fred DuBray’s bison herd on the Cheyenne River Reservation has been ravaged by Mycoplasma bovis, a tiny bacterium that is decimating herds across the Plains and the West. Smith’s report He Spent Decades Protecting Buffalo; A Microscopic Invader Threatens That Work appears in the March 12, 2022 issue of the Times.
Since last year, his buffalo have been dying by the dozens, victims of a microscopic invader, Mycoplasma bovis, that has ravaged pastures across the Great Plains and the West, according to Smith.

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Part 2—Crossbreeding Buffalo in Canada

Have you been thinking of crossbreeding some of your bison with beef cattle?

That has sounded like a good idea to lots of honest men and women for more than a century. If we can bring about in one animal: the best of both buffalo and cattle—that would be great, wouldn’t it?

How about having that sound intelligence and hardiness of American bison for every storm that comes along—evolved and adapted through thousands of years—to live in the far north?

And then mix in the abundance of great beef—not just what the slim-hipped buffalo provides, but real abundance in length and breadth of that tasty, tender loin and hip: mmmm.

Your beefalo—or catalo—or whatever you choose to call them—would certainly retain the best traits of both species, wouldn’t they?

Every few years it seems like some promoter is trying to sell that idea. Sounds like a good one, Right? Have you ever been tempted?

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What is Birth Synchrony in American Bison?

Birth Synchrony refers to the short period of time in the spring during which most buffalo calves are born. Typically, the main birthing season occurs within three or four weeks in spring, even though bulls may run with the cows all year around. In the long history of Buffalo evolving on the plains of North America, birth synchrony is considered an adaptation that insures that most calves are born at the time they are most likely to survive. This applies to Plains Buffalo and probably even more acutely to Wood buffalo of the far north. Because of long cold winters, the window of time for optimal survival of buffalo calves is especially short in the far north reaches of Canada where Wood buffalo live on the open range. Often pregnant cows come through winter in a semi-starved condition. Then almost suddenly grass greens up. It’s the birthing season. Winter semi-starvation gives way to spring’s tender and nutritious plant growth. This provides the best food of the year for mothers and...

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Saving Orphan Buffalo Calves

Feeding an orphan calf is an emergency situation. It has to be done “right now!” And it is a time commitment.

So it’s a good idea to be prepared.

Calving season has arrived and so have many new buffalo babies. It’s an exciting time of the year when new calves are welcomed to the world.

Fortunately for you who are buffalo ranchers there are usually few problems associated with calving.

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Hi Everyone

Welcome to each of YOU who joins us on this incredible journey!! 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!

Our Mission is to change the buffalo story to include the full heroic narrative of the magnificent buffalo, ordinary people Native and non-Native, saving them from extinction, caring for them and now all of us enjoying our amazing National Mammal on ranches, parks and tribal lands.

Our FREE Blog arrives every other Tuesday with a new Blog, News, Upcoming Events and Photos, it is written by Francie M. Berg, teacher and author of Buffalo Heartbeats, winner of 3 national awards. 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.

Let’s celebrate all things buffalo!

NEWS ARTICLE

Meat Intake linked to Health and Longer Life

Eating red meat extends your life, scientists say, in a comprehensive new world study published Feb 22 2022 in the International Journal of General Medicine.

Has eating meat become unfairly demonized as bad for your health?

“While detrimental effects of meat consumption on human health have been found in some studies in the past, the methods and findings in these studies are controversial and circumstantial,” says study author Dr. Wenpeng You, University of Adelaide researcher in biomedicine.

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UPCOMING EVENTS

April 8, 2022. Illinois Indiana Bison Association Spring Meeting. To be held in and around Hobart, IN. Learn more and register at http://www.illinoisindianabison.org/index.html.

April 21, 2022. Jack Auction Group Video Bison Auction. Online.

May 26, 2022. Jack Auction Group Video Bison Auction. Online.

July 12, 2022. International Bison Conference. Saskatoon, SK. The Canadian Bison Association, in partnership with the Saskatchewan and the U.S. National Bison Associations is excited to host the International Bison Convention to celebrate the rich history and promising future of the bison industry. The convention is held in Canada every 10 years and will be held in Saskatoon on July 12-15, 2022. The event will welcome close to 800 delegates who are stakeholders in the bison community including producers, chefs, consumers, researchers, conservationists, marketers, and policy makers. Get all the details and register athttps://bisonconvention2022.com/


Author
Francie Berg


Assistant
Ronda Fink

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