Bison photographed Jan. 9, 2022. Photo: Nick Sulzer // Buckrail

MOOSE, Wyo. — The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem is the only place in the United States where bison have lived continuously since prehistoric times; arguably no other animal symbolizes the West as does the American bison.

The bison herd seen today in Grand Teton National Park began as a herd of 15 bison who escaped a fenced wildlife park near Oxbow Bend in 1968. The Park Service allowed the herd to roam free and it now numbers over 500 animals.

Today, during the winter months, areas around the Snake River, Buffalo Fork River and Kelly Warm Springs are closed to all travel from Dec. 15 through March 31 to protect ungulate populations including, moose, elk, mule deer, bison and pronghorn.

Recently, twenty-eight Yellowstone bison found a new home on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation in Poplar, Montana as part of the Bison Conservation Transfer Program Jan. 12. The bison transferred were captured at Stephens Creek in the northwest corner of Yellowstone National Park in March 2020.

Photos: Nick Sulzer // Buckrail

Buckrail @ Caroline

Caroline Chapman is a Community News Reporter. She's a lover of alliteration, easy-to-follow recipes and board games when everyone knows the rules. Her favorite aspect about living in the Tetons is the collective admiration that Wyomingites share for the land and the life that it sustains.