your mouse on different parts of the buffalo
to discover how the Indians used everything from its beardto
its brains! They even found a use for bison doo-dooit fueled
their cooking fire. Aren't you glad your home has an oven?
Did you know that the bison
(or buffalo) is the biggest land animal in North America? They can
weigh more than 2,000 poundsthat's as much as a car! So how
did Indians hunt and kill themand without guns? Click here
to learn about their powerful
In the early 1800s there were
more bison than people in North Americaat least 50 million
versus perhaps 2 million humans. By the end of the century, professional
hide hunters (not Indians) had almost wiped out the bison, slaughtering
whole herds just for their thick woolly skins.
For thousands of years Native
Americans hunted bison and valued it above all other animals. Prized
for their meat, their hides, and their bones, a bison offered one-stop
shopping for most Plains Indianskind of like when we go to
Wal-Mart. You can imagine how hard it was for the Plains Indians
to see their most valuable resource slaughtered by the thousands.
Luckily, today bison are no longer endangered thanks to the concerted
efforts of ranchers and zoos, but there are far fewer of them than
in early historic times.