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American plains bison : rewilding an icon

Author: James A Bailey
Publisher: Helena, MT : Sweetgrass Books, division of Farcountry Press, [2013]
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
For many, plains bison are the embodiment of wildness and the pure-settlement American West. After millennial of evolution through natural selection, however, the species was nearly wiped out, only to be subjected to domestication for more than 100 years. Domestication alters the bison genome through inbreeding, crossing with cattle genes, shrinking genetic diversity and artificial selection. These forces continue  Read more...
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Details

Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: James A Bailey
ISBN: 1591521238 9781591521235
OCLC Number: 864358856
Description: xviii, 238 pages : illustrations, maps, graphs ; 23 cm
Contents: Part 1, Origins --
From steppe bison to plains bison --
Bison in early historic time --
Part II, Dimensions of wildness --
Extinction --
Wild bison --
Wild bison populations --
Values of wild plains bison --
Major ecotypes of wild plains bison --
Domestication of plains bison --
Part III, American plains bison in the modern era --
20th century: From devastation to limbo --
21st century: An imitation of wildness --
Rating our conservation herds --
Part IV, Restoration of wild plains bison --
To restore wild plains bison.
Other Titles: Rewilding an icon
Responsibility: James A. Bailey.

Abstract:

For many, plains bison are the embodiment of wildness and the pure-settlement American West. After millennial of evolution through natural selection, however, the species was nearly wiped out, only to be subjected to domestication for more than 100 years. Domestication alters the bison genome through inbreeding, crossing with cattle genes, shrinking genetic diversity and artificial selection. These forces continue to replace natural selection and valued wild characteristics of bison. Does the future hold only continued domestication for plains bison in the United States? With a view from over 50 years in the profession of wildlife biology, Bailey probes this and other questions in American Plains Bison: Rewilding an Icon. The book presents his original and lively analysis of 44 conservation bison herds on native range in the United States. He focuses upon the gray area between wildness and domestication and sheds light on domesticating practices of Native American and government agencies, as well as commercial bison producers. He challenges the profession of wildlife management to expand its views on manipulating wildlife populations. For bison, Bailey makes a strong case for creating large reserves to restore wild bison and their natural contributions to our grassland ecosystems.

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