On my first trip to Wyoming this year Winter and Spring were struggling for control of the landscape. It was a combination of snow storms and spring flowers, warm afternoons and frozen nights. Into this tumultuous time the bison were calving.
Bison, Wyoming. Winter's snow and Spring's new grasses spread across a landscape punctuated by bison.
Each day the size of the herds grew as new calves were born. As you might imagine, these calves have to be tough to survive in such an environment. Not only was the weather extreme, but so was the care of the mothers. I saw cows that tenderly licked their calves, or spent the night with their neck stretched over the baby bison to keep it warmed in a mantle of mane. And I also saw cows kicking their young when they had run out of patience.
Bison, Wyoming. A cow bison tenderly cuddles a calf, keeping it warm through a cold night.
Bison, Wyoming. A calf curls up for a nap after nursing.
One night, just as the sun was setting I saw a hilarious interaction between a calf and cow. The cow decided that she wasn't going to have anything more to do with nursing. The calf was sure that there was more milk to be had, if only he could find it. With no appologies to Benny Hill, please enjoy the following clip...
Charles St. Charles
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