I am very fortunate to live only half an hour away from Elk Island National Park where there are about 400 plains bison and 300 wood bison. It is the only fully fenced national park in the country, and the fencing is necessary because the bison population is being actively managed. The fence is there to keep out predators and stop the bison from roaming too far.
I went there today with my eldest son and his family and we were notified at the park gate that there had been two bear sightings this morning! We were advised to be cautious, and the brochure we were handed told us to talk firmly to a bear if we should see one. Right. I always treat black bears like naughty children. Doesn’t everyone?
We were pleased to see a herd of bison soon after arriving, and they seemed to be quite content to rest and graze not far from a small parking area. They saw us and we saw them and neither moved very close to the other. I was glad I had brought my long lens.
Shortly after we left that area we passed a bison at the side of the road. Like the other bison we saw, it is shedding its winter coat. It was so close I could have reached out to touch it. On our return journey, it was still happily chomping away at the grass, completely oblivious to traffic.
All-in-all, it was a delightful morning. The weather was about 15 Celsius and the skies were blue. Bison are often elusive, so being able to take so many pictures made my Mothers’ Day complete.
The park is asking visitors not to come at weekends until the fall due to parking problems.