Bison Acts As Snow Plow To Eat Frozen Grass Beneath The Snow In Yellowstone National Park

Bison plows through snow
Travel For Wildlife

Now that’s what you call a 100% organic, all-natural snow plow.

Bison are just built different, and are officially (and scientifically) some of the toughest beasts on the planet. They better be if they are going to make it through some of the brutal winters that hit Yellowstone National Park every year.

Recently, a photographer captured some stunning photos of bison that were quite literally frozen as they traversed the harsh wintery conditions at Yellowstone. Drew Simms went out in negative 37 degree temperatures to snap photos and video of the bison somehow, someway making it through the winter.

It was through those photos that we were better able to understand how a bison’s wooly coat helps them stay warm, allegedly creating such a thick layer of insulation that the snow landing on them doesn’t melt from the heat of their skin.

Survival traits like that are what help the massive 2,000 pound beasts make it through the harshest of cold conditions. They’ve also evolved to only need a small amount of food during the winter months, usually through vegetation that’s far beneath the snow.

We didn’t get to see how they reach their food source from the photographer’s work linked above, but we do get to see the bison searching and finding buried grass in the video below.

The incredible footage showcases how bison are able to discover and consume grass and other vegetation that lays dormant beneath the wintry precipitation. Bison first plow their way through feet of snow, and then use their head as a makeshift shovel (or snow scraper, whichever you prefer).

Doing so clears away the heaviest of the snow, and reveals the plant life beneath that bison can utilize to maximize their nutrition intake. It also brings a whole other meaning to “using your head.”

When you see stuff like this, it should be no surprise that bison have managed to live and thrive in the American West for thousands of years. They’ve reportedly downsized a bit, but other than that, their species is going strong.

Mostly thanks (or at least a little bit thanks) to their innate ability to turn their noggin into a snowplow when the situation calls for it:

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock