american bison-purple cap
The American Bison is a bovine mammal, also commonly known as the American Buffalo, or simply buffalo, something of a misnomer as it is only distantly related to either of the two "true buffaloes": the Water Buffalo and the African Buffalo. The bison originally inhabited the Great Plains of the United States and Canada in massive herds, ranging from the Great Slave Lake in Canada's far north to Mexico in the south, and from eastern Oregon almost to the Atlantic Ocean, taking its subspecies into account. Its two subspecies are the Plains Bison (Bison bison bison), distinguished by its smaller size and more rounded hump, and the Wood Bison (Bison bison athabascae), distinguished by its larger size and taller square hump. Wood Bison are one of the largest species of cattle in the world, surpassed in size only by the massive Asian Gaur and Wild Asiatic Water Buffalo, both of which are found mainly in India and Southeast Asia.