Looks like the bison population is about to change drastically…
Hundreds of bison are set to be killed in Yellowstone National Park in the upcoming weeks, according to Newsweek.
The National Park Service (NPS) confirmed the news this past Tuesday.
In an effort to keep the population manageable, 600-900 Yellowstone bison will be either killed or moved.
They said via Facebook post that the efforts to control the bison population in Yellowstone began on February 13th at a northern part of the park called Stephens Creek, near Gardiner, Montana.
“Bison capture and shipping operations begin when bison migrate from the interior of the park into the Gardiner (Montana) Basin and may continue through late March.”
There are a total of 5,540 bison in Yellowstone, broken up into two different herds.
Of course, bison used to be pretty plentiful across North America, but were brought to near extinction by colonial settlers and the U.S. Army in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Now, there is an estimated 30,000 bison left in managed herds across the country, not including those kept on private land.
Yellowstone said that the bison killings will be done in three different ways: hunting the bison that roam outside the park by Native American tribes and the wider public, transporting them to tribal people for processing, and moving healthy bison onto tribal lands.
The NPS video about the bison control efforts included a statement behind their decision:
“Bison from Yellowstone don’t have enough room to roam outside the park. As the population grows, more bison migrate.
This migration can cause conflict. Safety concerns include property damage and disease transmission to cattle.
Our goal is to preserve bison while addressing these concerns.”