Bison by the Numbers

Data & Statistics


183,780: Number of bison in the United States residing on private ranches and farms according to the 2017 USDA census.

1,775: Number of private U.S. ranches and farms raising bison according to the 2017 USDA census.

119,314: Canadian private-bison herd size according to 2016 Canadian Census of Ag.

9,855: Approximate number of bison in US federal herds (DOI 2014)

9,008: Bison in State and other Public herds (USFWS 2011)

20,000: Estimated bison on tribal lands

362,406: Estimated herd size in North America today.

30 – 60 Million: Estimated North American herd size prior to 1600.

Less than 1,000: Estimated number of bison prior to 1900 before efforts were made to preserve and restore the species.

61,300: Approximate number of bison slaughtered under federal and state inspection in 2016 in the U.S. (By contrast US Beef slaughters about 125,000/day).

270-285: gestation period in days for a bison cow.

40-50 pounds: approximate weight of a new born calf.

20 years: average reproductive life span of the average bison cow.

20-30 months: age of a mature meat animal.

2.42: grams of fat in a 100 gram serving of cooked bison.

10.15: grams of fat in a 100 gram serving of cooked beef.