Skip to main content

Meet the Minnesota Zoo's brand new baby bison

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

The Minnesota Zoo has a brand new baby official mammal of the United States.

The baby bison (for those of you who missed the news earlier this week about its new status) is the first one born at the Apple Valley zoo in 2016, and the 43rd to ever be born at the zoo, they said in a news release.

The calf is believed to be male, and the herd of nine is expecting more calf births later this year, the zoo says.

In the meantime, here's some video of the new baby bison:

https://youtu.be/zIzMe3wI4Tw

And a few photos too:

Bison were almost hunted to extinction

Bison were once the largest and most abundant animals in North America, according to the release, with an estimated 30-60 million roaming the plains before European settlement. They were hunted nearly to extinction in the late 19th century – less than 1,000 bison remained in the U.S at that time. The last wild bison observed in Minnesota was in Norman County in 1880.

After a national effort to revive the species during the 20th century, there are an estimated 500,000 bison in the U.S. today. However, the Associated Press says most of those have been crossbred with cattle, making then semi-domesticated. The news service reports there are about 30,000 truly wild bison in the country, with the largest population in Yellowstone National Park.

Minnesota has its own special bison population in Blue Mounds State Park. They are a rare kind that show no genetic evidence of breeding with cattle. Last year, 11 of those genetically-rare bison were moved to Minneopa State Park near Mankato to help expand the Minnesota conservation herd.

Bison Fun Facts

  • Bison eat about 15 pounds of grass and sedges per day.
  • They grunt periodically to communicate and keep contact with the rest of their herd.
  • They also bellow aggressively when challenging another animal.
  • In the winter, bisons' thick fur helps them survive, and they clear snow by sweeping their massive heads from side to side.

Next Up

Williams Uptown Pub

Williams Uptown Pub & Peanut Bar closes indefinitely after shooting

Reports say police have arrested two suspects in the incident.

Alex Rodríguez

A-Rod wears a Packers hat, Minnesotans lose their minds

The Timberwolves co-owner didn't endear himself to his fan base on Saturday night.

Flickr - Minneapolis police squad - Chad Davis

Police: Man shoots into crowd at funeral reception in Minneapolis

The shooting happened at a reception following a funeral on Saturday afternoon.

Screen Shot 2022-01-23 at 8.37.27 AM

Watch: Jimmy Garoppolo says 'F*** the Packers' after playoff win

The 49ers quarterback congratulated Robbie Gould in spectacular fashion.

Aaron Rodgers

America dunks on Aaron Rodgers after loss to 49ers

The Packers quarterback was destroyed on social media on Saturday night.

Marcus Foligno

Foligno's OT winner gives Wild fans a happy Hockey Day

A slow start gave way to the Wild's fifth win in the past six games.

snow

Winter weather advisory issued as Saturday snow arrives

Not huge totals expected, but any snow will likely impact travel.

Wilf

Report: Ryan Poles is Vikings' 'top choice' for general manager

Poles was one of two finalists revealed on Friday.

Payton Willis

Willis carries shorthanded Gophers to beat Rutgers

The senior scored a career-high 32 points to end a four-game losing streak.

Related

DNR and Minnesota Zoo team up to manage bison herd

The Minnesota Zoo and the Department of Natural Resources will cooperatively manage a herd of bison at state parks and a zoo exhibit. The herd will be genetically pure, unlike most modern-day bison which have domestic cattle in their family tree.

Cause of baby dolphin death at the Minnesota Zoo remains uncertain

The Star Tribune reports the zoo's pathologist wasn't able to find anything specific as to why the young Atlantic bottlenose dolphin passed away from complications of a stomach ulcer in early February. This was the third baby dolphin to die at the zoo in the past six years.

Minnesota Zoo mourning death of baby dolphin

Taijah, a playful dolphin who was popular with zoo staff and guests alike, passed away after coming down with a sudden illness.

New lynx kitten debuts at Minnesota Zoo

The zoo on Thursday unveiled its new Canada lynx kitten on the Medtronic Minnesota Trail. The male lynx, born May 11, has been behind the scenes with its mother. Now that he’s big enough to leave the den, he’s getting acquainted with his new exhibit.

Minnesota Zoo's expansion plans call for new Adventure Park, animal exhibits

The Minnesota Zoo's new master plan, which was approved by its board on Nov. 1, features some ambitious ideas for the Apple Valley facility. CEO Lee Ehmke told the Pioneer Press, "We inspire to become a world-leading zoo with the ultimate intention on saving wildlife and wild places. This is the next step in that evolution."