Best time to travel to Midwest

Baby Bison in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park in Midwest

Baby bisons of Great Plains are cute and playful, enjoying life under protection of their mothers

Best time: April–June

Baby Bison in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Baby Bison in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Baby Bison in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Bisons are the symbol of Great Plains. Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota cares about their conservation and restoration, as calves are very important to the herds. Calving season usually begins in April. Newborn bisons are bright orange. They get up and start walking three hours after birth. During the first few weeks, they stay close to their mothers who are very protective during this time.

Calves are very playful and spend a lot of time with other babies in "nursery groups", under an eye of other cows in the herd. For the first three months, from April till June, the calves are the cutest. Three months later their coloration changes from orange-red to darker brown. In the same period, the hump and horns begin to form. Baby bison stays with its mother for about a year until a new calf is born.

Practical info

When is the ideal time to visit Theodore Roosevelt National Park?

Theodore Roosevelt National Park in the Midwestern region of the United States is best visited in the springtime, specifically between April and June. During this period, bisons calve, making it an opportune time to see newborn calves. The weather is mild in the spring, making it a more comfortable season to explore the park's vast expanse of over 70,000 acres. Show more

What are the characteristics of Theodore Roosevelt National Park's location?

The region of North Dakota is where you'll find Theodore Roosevelt National Park. The vast park area includes 70,000 acres featuring grasslands, badlands, and petrified forests. There is an abundance of wildlife within the park, including over 100 species of birds and more than 1,000 resident bisons of the Midwestern region. Show more

What is the purpose of the orange coloration of baby bisons, and what predators does it protect them from?

Camouflage is the orange-red coloration of baby bisons, which protects them from predators present in the grasslands where they are born, such as mountain lions, coyotes, and wolves. Gradually, the orange color changes to a darker brown coinciding with the development of a bison's hump and horns. Show more

How long does a baby bison stay with its mother at Theodore Roosevelt National Park?

The bonding between a bison calf and its mother is strong, and it lasts up to a year. It's a crucial period where the calf learns to feed, survive, and grow, under its mother's guidance and protection. After a year, the calves become independent and are free to explore and join other bisons in neighboring herds. Show more

What is the usual weight of a newborn bison calf in Theodore Roosevelt National Park, and how does it develop?

Newborn bison calves weigh between 50 to 100 pounds, depending on the calf's gender, and their mother's health condition. Playful and energetic, they gain weight quickly and will continue to grow and develop until they're fully mature adult bisons. Calves can walk and run within hours after birth, making them an impressive sight to watch. Show more

Ask a question

Find hotels and airbnbs near Baby Bison in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park (Map)

Last updated: