« The Great Outdoors

Buffalo or Bison

by Tom Mitchell

I moved to South Dakota in 2005 and quickly learned that the "Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam" song referred incorrectly to the giant beasts who once roamed the western prairies by the millions.  The song should actually sing "oh give me a home where the American Bison roam....".  Do you know the difference between a bison and a buffalo?  The animal that most Americans call a buffalo is actually bison. Buffaloes are found in Africa and south Asia while bison roam in North and South America. An easy way to remember the difference: the horns.  A buffalo's horns will connect at the top of the skull; a bison's horns do not connect.  

Quick side note; while cruising the Mississippi River this past July 4th along the shores of the quaint river town Buffalo City, Wisconsin, my family and I watched their annual July 4th parade.  And in the parade was a live bison - Cody II    It's not often a person can enjoy a river cruise, a parade and a bison sighting all at once!