Bison with itchy face uses friend as scratching post
Bison are massive animals that once roamed in great numbers across the plains of North America. They can reach heights of more than 2m (6 1/2 feet) and weigh up to 1270kg (2800 pounds). Nomadic grazers, they travel in herds. But sadly, they were hunted to near extinction in the 19th and 20th centuries. Their population has since rebounded. Now, they live in the great numbers in the wild and on game preserves and sanctuaries where they are protected.
These beautiful animals live on a preserve where they have thousands of acres to roam and graze, living life as close as possible to what nature intended. Enjoying a leisurely day at the edge of the preserve, they have found fresh grass and a mud hole, as well as a place for a rest. But while one lies on the ground, his big friend decided to use him as a scratching post for an itchy face. The one on the ground is patient and tolerant as he remains still while the other rubs his cheek on a furry shoulder. This may be a frequent thing in the herd and perhaps they all get a turn.
Interestingly, the bison with the itchy face has one horn pointing upwards and the other pointing more frontwards in a very non uniform fashion. It's impossible to know why this is, but it doesn't seem to be a problem as the big fellow is thriving and looks perfectly healthy and well fed.
Bison can be unpredictable. They generally appear to be lazy and unconcerned, but they can occasionally act aggressively without warning or apparent reason. They can move quickly, at speeds up to almost 60km/h (35mph). Both males and females have large horns which give them ample protection from predators. Their hind legs are also powerful and they fear very few predators, with the exception of wolves in packs or brown bears. Mountain lions are also capable of preying on bison.
Bison are majestic animals and their massive size is impressive when witnessed close up.