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Sex in the Prairie

For the past month, our buffalo herd has been, well… rather horny. It’s the rut (breeding season that is), which stirs up a lot of action and noise on the prairie! You could say that it is the beginning cycle of the regeneration process.

Bison in Rut

Occasionally, we receive mail or comments from some that say, “We have blood on our hands” for harvesting animals or, “There is no reason to harvest an animal except for our own personal greed”. We realize those folks are short on information, as boys and girls for eternity will get together – no matter what the species and make more of that species.

As many of you know, we manage our grassland pastures for soil and grass health, as well as species diversity - our humane field harvest is essential in balancing that prairie health.

We think the rut is pretty fascinating and thought you might too...? If so – check out my homemade short video that I put together from footage I gathered over the past month.

A brief explanation of what you will see: Initially in the rut, the bulls chase each other around and a hierarchy is established. Younger males join in too and even the young ones butt horns and play, practice for their future. After the “order” is established, males will “tend” a cow until she is ready to be bred, but it often doesn’t go without a fight. As the rut continues, the bigger bulls, exhausted, often trot off by themselves. You will also notice that there is a bit of affection that takes place too, with nuzzling and licking. It’s also not just the bull that chooses – the female has a say in this too, and will stay close to the mate of her choice. In between times of heightened amorousness and also as the rut slows down, the herd finds its tranquility. These comments are not scientifically backed – they are just my observations that I have made over the years. Enjoy!

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17 comments

  • It was far more quiet than I thought it would be, I expected more grunting (roaring? Calling?) from the bulls

    Holly Wood
  • What a great peek into the window of life — thank you!

    Joyce Cross
  • The American bison. . .replenishment to natural balance in the 21st century. Go wild with great ideas. Backing you from New Hampshire all the while keeping the faith.

    Vernon Cross

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