Living in temperate deciduous forests, sometimes coming out to browse. These magnificent creatures can grow up to 2 m (6.5 ft) tall and weigh over 900 kg (2,000 pounds), making them one of the largest land animals in Europe. They have a distinctive brown coat and a shaggy mane that runs down their neck and shoulders, giving them a regal appearance. European bison are herbivores and primarily graze on grasses and other vegetation.
European bison were once hunted to near extinction like their North American counterparts. By the early 20th century, only a handful of individuals remained in the wild. However, thanks to dedicated conservation efforts, their population has rebounded to over 6,000 individuals today. European bison are now classified as “vulnerable” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). They still face threats and require ongoing conservation efforts to ensure their survival.
- 2023: According to All About Bison, in certain regions, the European bison population has made remarkable progress, with a recent report indicating the establishment of a new herd consisting of approximately 150 individuals.
Did you know?
- Both males and females have horns.
- European bison have less sharp eyesight compared to their other senses. Their large forward-facing eyes offer a broad field of view rather than precise visual details, making it challenging for them to discern distant objects or fine details.
- The footprints of European bison resemble those of cattle and moose. Their front hooves create larger imprints compared to their hind legs.
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Terrestrial / Aquatic
Altricial / Precocial
Polygamous / Monogamous
Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic
Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal
Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd
Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore
Migratory: Yes / No
Domesticated: Yes / No
Dangerous: Yes / No