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Bison Latifrons


bison latifrons giant

The Giant Bison (Royal Saskatchewan Museum)


Bison latifrons; also known as the Giant Bison


Plains and woodlands of North America

Historical Epoch:

Late Pleistocene (300,000-15,000 years ago)

Size and Weight:

Up to 8 feet high and 2 tons



Distinguishing Characteristics:

Large size; shaggy front legs; giant horns


About Bison Latifrons (the Giant Bison):

Although they were certainly the best-known megafauna mammals of late Pleistocene North America, the Woolly Mammoth and American Mastodon weren't the only giant plant-eaters of their day. There was also Bison latifrons, aka the Giant Bison, a direct ancestor of modern bison the males of which attained weights of close to two tons. The Giant Bison had equally giant horns--some preserved specimens span over 6 feet from side to side--though this mammal apparently didn't congregate in the giant herds of modern bison, preferring to roam the plains and woodlands in smaller family units. The Giant Bison is believed to have evolved into Bison antiquus, the immediate predecessor of Bison bison, which blackened the plains of 19th-century North America.

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