When European settlers first arrived in Ohio, there were many bison roaming the state. The last bison was killed in Ohio in Lawrence County in the early 1800s. After many years of prairie restoration at Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park on the Far West Side, introducing bison was a logical step to help thin the vegetation and add richness and diversity to the ecosystem. In 2011, six bison — all female — were brought to their new home.
This summer, a male bison joined the herd. We visit the park to get an update on the herd, its contributions to the prairie landscape, and finally learn the difference between a buffalo and a bison.