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    llr1's Avatar
    llr1 Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
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    #1

    Aug 22, 2016, 01:17 PM
    Are Bison and buffalo the same?
    A park ranger recently told my tour group Bison and Buffalo are the same. My research indicates they are different animals from different continents. What is the real answer?
    ma0641's Avatar
    ma0641 Posts: 15,681, Reputation: 1012
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    #2

    Aug 22, 2016, 01:42 PM
    They are different species. However, even in the Buffalo genus there are many differences. Remember, the Buffalo nickel was misnamed too. Genetically they are probably 99% the same.
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #3

    Aug 22, 2016, 02:35 PM
    The ranger was correct. The AMERICAN 'buffalo' IS the bison. European settlers called them buffalo after the Asian buffalo they had seen, for lack of a better word.

    Many native people don't like the term bison, however, and prefer buffalo, so it gets a little confusing.
    catonsville's Avatar
    catonsville Posts: 894, Reputation: 91
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    #4

    Aug 22, 2016, 03:18 PM
    Buffalo don't roam across the United States and Bison don't roam across Asia and Africa, cousins maybe, both are huge with Buffalo winning the ugly contest.
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
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    #5

    Aug 23, 2016, 04:34 AM
    "In North America, the names are used interchangeably for the species Bison bison," Ross MacPhee, Curator of the Department of Mammalogy at the American Museum of Natural History, said. But though both bison and buffalo are bovids, or members of the cattle family, there are some definite differences between them. "Elsewhere—in non-English-speaking Europe, for example—a bison is the European Bison, Bison bonasus, a species very closely related to B. bison," MacPhee says. "A buffalo is either a Cape Buffalo Syncerus (Africa), or Water Buffalo Bubalus (South Asia), neither of which are closely related to either kind of bison."

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