The mystery of the appearance of a new life

In the Central Bison nursery, the arrival of spring and the appearance of offspring are awaited

Winter frosts continue, although the sun appears more often and warms more. The light day is growing, the turn of nature is more and more evident towards spring. The skin of our mighty bison is covered with snow, their beards are frozen and even tinkle when walking. But in this kingdom of snow and ice, unnoticed by the eyes, the mystery of the development of a new life is created. Most of the females are now pregnant.

The time for autumn weddings has long been over, and future mothers are waiting for the babies to appear. The cubs will appear in the light, as soon as the last snowstorms come off, the snow will come down and a young grass will appear.
Until the last moment it is difficult to say which of the females is pregnant. Approximately 2 weeks before the birth, the female behavior changes: she becomes aggressive and often departs from the herd, seeking solitude. And finally the sacrament is accomplished and the mother takes the newborn baby from the depths of the pen.
Pregnancy in bison lasts about 9 months (more often 263-265 days). Most of the offspring are born in May or June, but sometimes babies appear at other times of the year.
This is due to good living conditions. In the wild, a calf born in the fall can not survive without feeding because it can not gain the right weight before the winter cold.

At birth, a small bison weighs between 15 and 21 kg. Already an hour after his birth he begins to follow his mother. Fat, delicious milk calf receives from the mother for one year. Already three weeks after birth, he eats fresh grass with pleasure, at the age of a month and a half – tree branches. At the age of two months in the nursery, he begins to receive dry combined fodder.
Every year, 12-15 calves are born in the Central Breeding Cemetery of the Prioksko-Terrasny Reserve. In ten months they are taken away from their mothers. Small bisons begin an independent life – first in a youth group, and after reaching 2.5-3 years – in places of free breeding.