Here’s two animals that just don’t usually clash… they have no real reason to. They both eat plants, both hate wolves, and both want nothing but peace until it comes to mating… and even then, they really only battle their own kind for mating rights and to show their dominance.
Bison and elk are two large mammals. Bison, the largest to roam North America can weigh as much as 2,000-pounds. While elk weigh in closer to the 900-pound range. Bison and elk typically stay away from each other. They use much of the same area where they both reside. They have very similar diets eating multiple plants. Naturally, their paths tend to cross.
Bison are known to show aggression towards elk from time to time. However, the reason for why is unknown. Elk serve no threat and generally avoid bison if they can, there’s speculation as per why but no cold hard facts of for the aggression.
This bison and large bull elk are seen squaring up. The pair go head to head and push back and forth. The bison, clearly has a weight advantage. But, the elk has massive pointy antlers to its advantage. The playing field is probably actually fairly equal.
As they fight it out, you have to think the antlers must hurt the bison. But, then again, they have reinforced heads for their own sparing sessions. Maybe, the hard bone is nothing compared to the large jolts they are used to taking.
Eventually, the elk has enough and peels away not willing to lose a pointless battle.
That’s one of those once-in-a-lifetime interactions.
Bison Herd Gores Elk Calf Trying To Hide From Wolf
When it comes to wildlife videos, we typically see a number of creatures fight over their prey in an effort to claim dinner for the night. However, what we rarely see is two opposing creatures helping another out, and that’s exactly what we see here in this video.
In this footage from National Geographic, we see a wolf stalking an elk calf in Yellowstone National Park. Out of nowhere, the elk notices a group of bison roaming nearby, and runs over to the group to seek refuge, knowing that they’re herbivores and pose no threat.
However, things take a turn real quick when it’s easy to see that the bison are tired of the elk’s presence in the group, and one turns and gores the elk outside of the herd.
Next thing you know, the herd of bison gang up on the lone elk, and end up killing it. Of course, with bison being herbivores they eat only grass, weeds, and plants, so they no longer have a use for the dead elk. The wolf, who watched the wild event unfold from a distance, then takes her opportunity to feed off the dead elk. Needless to say, it was the wolf’s lucky day, as the video states that wolves can eat up to 20 pounds of meat per sitting, and she has it all to herself.
It truly does almost appear as if the herd of bison were doing a favor for the onlooking wolf, and it’s pretty amazing to watch this unfold up close and personal.