Yellowstone Bison or Buffalo Wall Art Pictures in Snow and Ice
In this Winter Buffalo Photography Print Gallery you can purchase some of the best winter Bison fine art limited edition photo prints available. Many of the beautiful and dramatic ice and snow covered Bison photos you see here are from Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park but there are images here from South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho and other areas. The photos you see here have been collected by Jess after hundreds if not thousands of winter days in the Western United State and represent the finest prints available.
As you scroll down below the photos you will see the various presentation available to display one of these unique photos in your Home or Business.
Buffalo or Bison? What is in a name?
Though the terms are often used interchangeably, buffalo and bison are distinct animals. Old World “true” buffalo (Cape buffalo and water buffalo) are native to Africa and Asia. Bison are found in North America and Europe.
Both bison and buffalo are in the bovidae family, but the two are not closely related.
How did the names get so mixed up? Historians believe that early European explorers are to blame, though the details are a bit murky. According to the National Park Service, it’s possible it stemmed from the French word boeuf, meaning beef. Others posit that bison hides resembled buff coats commonly worn by military men at the time, inspiring the name. Whatever the case, the misnomer stuck.
Winter Bison Survival
The North American bison, often referred to as the buffalo, is an iconic symbol of the American West. These majestic creatures have evolved over centuries to adapt to the harsh winter conditions of their native habitats. In this article, we will explore the remarkable strategies that bison employ to survive the winter months.
1. Thick Fur and Insulation:
One of the most distinctive features of bison is their thick fur. During the winter, the Bisons thick fur becomes even more crucial for survival. Bison have a double-layered coat, consisting of a dense undercoat and a longer, coarser outer layer. This design provides excellent insulation, keeping them warm and protected from the biting cold.
2. Foraging for Winter Food:
As the snow blankets the landscape, it becomes challenging for bison to find food. However, they are well-equipped for this challenge. Bison use their massive heads to sweep away snow, revealing the grass beneath. They are grazers, primarily feeding on grass, which remains accessible even in winter.
3. Energy Conservation:
To conserve energy during the winter months, bison have developed some remarkable adaptations. They move in a slow, deliberate manner, avoiding unnecessary exertion. Bison also reduce their activity levels and spend more time resting, which helps them conserve valuable energy reserves.
4. Seeking Shelter:
While bison are known for their ability to withstand extreme cold, they do seek shelter during particularly severe weather. They may gather in groups to create a natural windbreak, protecting each other from the harshest elements. These group gatherings also provide a sense of community and social bonding.
5. Thermal Regulation:
Bison have an incredible ability to regulate their body temperature. In extremely cold conditions, they can increase their metabolic rate to generate more heat. Conversely, during warmer winter days, they may reduce their metabolic rate to conserve energy. This adaptability helps them thrive in varying winter climates.
6. Snow as a Water Source:
While it may seem counterintuitive, bison can obtain water from snow. They have a specialized digestive system that efficiently extracts moisture from the snow they consume. This adaptation allows them to survive even when other water sources are frozen.
7. Migration Patterns:
In some regions, bison undertake seasonal migrations in search of better winter forage. They follow ancient migration routes to find areas where snow cover is lighter, and food is more abundant. This strategy enables them to access vital resources throughout the winter.
The bison's ability to survive the harsh winter conditions of North America is a testament to their remarkable adaptations and resilience. Their thick fur, foraging strategies, energy conservation, and social behaviors all play crucial roles in their winter survival. As we marvel at these incredible creatures, we gain a deeper appreciation for the beauty and tenacity of wildlife in the face of challenging environments.