It’s been over 100 years since a wood bison calf was born and bred in the wild, but that has all changed over the past few weeks!
Pictures released from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game reveal one sweet treasure among a lineup of adult wood bison: a calf! The Department posted on its Facebook page that “this monumental event is a milestone that marks the beginning of a viable, wild, and growing population of wood bison in Alaska.”
Because Alaska is the only place in the United States where wood bison are found, this is a huge victory for conservationists and biologists who have been closely monitoring the population of wood bison since 1957. The ancestors of this current herd was bred in captivity and monitored since then in hopes that biologists could save the subspecies.
This herd was reintegrated in the wild during last year’s spring, and have been flourishing ever since, producing calves and raising them among the herd. As two calves have been spotted as of now, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game expects to see about 30 new calves this year alone.
In fact, there could be even more than expected. A Facebook user named Ron Turner commented on the post that he “saw a young one couple weeks ago bird hunting didn’t think anything of it,” which means the herd could be rebounding beyond measure.