Lamar Buffalo Ranch

The extermination of bison herds throughout the West in the 19th century nearly eliminated them from Yellowstone. Even after the park was established in 1872 poachers faced few deterrents. With only 25 bison counted in the park in 1901, Congress appropriated funding to purchase bison from private owners. As part of the first effort to preserve a wild species through intensive management, these bison were fed and bred in Lamar Valley at what became known as the Buffalo Ranch. As the herd grew in size, it was released to breed with the park’s freeroaming population and used to start and supplement herds on other public and tribal land.