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American BisonA Natural History$
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Dale Lott, Jan van Wagtendonk, and Kevin Shaffer

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780520233386

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520233386.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 29 July 2021

Bison Athletics

Bison Athletics

Chapter:
(p.40) (p.41) Chapter 4 Bison Athletics
Source:
American Bison
Author(s):

Dale F. Lott

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520233386.003.0004

While buffalo leaps and sprints are spectacular, walking is the athletic talent that brings the animals to food and water day after day. Bison are roamers. The energy cost is high; bulls weigh about a ton. When a vehicle that size is fueled with blades of grass, every blade has to count. So the athletic challenge becomes like one of those competitions to see how far a vehicle can travel on a gallon of gas. It's all about efficiency — getting the most out of every drop of gas or blade of grass. The bulls are built to be quick in battle. To protect their body with their head, they need to pivot around their front feet. They have a great form for that function: much of their weight is centered over their front legs.

Keywords:   movement, bison, walking, buffalo, energy cost, energy efficiency

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