By: Marlene Affeld
It is believed that that bison, or buffalo, originated in Eurasia then crossed over the Bering Strait land bridge that at one time connected the Asian and North American continents. In prehistoric times the massive herds literally darkened the face of the earth as they roamed and foraged. Over many centuries the buffalo slowly migrated southward until they inhabited much of the grasslands of the United States. Seas of bison herds stretched across the horizon from Canada to Mexico and from the northwestern Pacific coast in Oregon southeast as far as Florida.
Bison were the most numerous single species of large wild mammal on Earth and is the largest land mammal in North America since the end of the Ice Age. A male buffalo may stand as high as six feet and weigh up to 2,000 pounds.