Quapaw Cattle Company – As the summer comes to an end, typically, birthing baby buffalo goes with it. However, life continues budding on the Quapaw Reservation as Quapaw Nation welcomed several new baby bison this week.
Bison Herd Manager Jason Reeves says baby bison are still arriving well into late August. "They've typically got a mating season that leads to births between April and June." Said Mr. Reeves. "It's extraordinary to see babies being born into the fall."
Mr. Reeves stated there are around ten baby bison in one pasture and fifteen or so in another owned by Quapaw Nation. Male and females both occupy the bison pastures, but some don't like to play nice and must be separated into smaller groups. With approximately 200 bison in total, Quapaw Nation has a growing herd and welcomes the new additions.
Bison mothers are very protective of their young and often growl and become defensive when humans try to come near one of their young. We asked if Mr. Reeves ever has to assist with the birthing process like some farmers and ranchers must do with cattle. "Absolutely not, those momma's would mess me up." Stated Mr. Reeves. He went on to note that the bison mothers would never allow it. In fact, the other bison will "pack together" and protect the birthing mother and baby.
Just as in our own Native culture, we are a "Tribe" bonded together even though we are not all blood relatives. It was heart-warming to hear that bison do something similar in protecting their own. Amidst the rising concerns of Covid-19, the variants of the epidemic, and those we have lost to it, is a gift of new life – a reminder of new blessings on the Quapaw Reservation.