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Old Jun 16, 2013, 2:21 PM   #1
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Default Bison Release

On the eastern edge of the Twin Cities metro area is a prairie restoration project, where 150 acres are being returned to their former natural state. For the last six years a small herd of bison has been brought in to help the process. The bison's hoofs aerate the soil naturally, their coat picks up seeds and deposit them elsewhere as they fall off and as the bison only graze on the tops of the prairie plants they keep the plants from getting too tall. Yesterday the first of the herd were trucked in from the main herd in Wisconsin.

Here's the first of the 35 bison coming down the ramp.

They charged out of the truck, finding a crowd of several hundred visitors (behind a fence) facing them. You can see in the following two pictures their reaction.

After the 34 cows were released, the bull made his appearance. While all the cows came charging out of the truck and rapidly fled to the far end of the prairie, the bull sauntered down the ramp, stopped and looked around, at ease with his surroundings.

He even took time to grab a mouthful of grass and munched on it for awhile.

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Old Jun 16, 2013, 5:20 PM   #2
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Fantastic, so good to see.

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Old Jun 16, 2013, 5:51 PM   #3
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One of the biggest contributions grazing animals make to grassland is they provide a wonderful source of natural fertiliser.
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Old Jun 16, 2013, 10:07 PM   #4
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Very nice set! It must have been fun to watch. I thought seeing my first bison in Yellowstone quite moving - by the end of our week's visit I thought they were ho-hum as they were all over and stopped traffic whenever they appeared.
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Old Jun 17, 2013, 8:33 PM   #5
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A great series. I hope the restoration effort is a resounding success.
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Old Jun 18, 2013, 5:13 PM   #6
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G'day mate

Always great to see animal restoration-to-environment images
We have similar things in the great land Downunder ... and it's the sort of thing that brings out the best in communities as well

Well done
Regards, Phil
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