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1st bison of 2023 born at Rocky Mountain Arsenal

Spring has sprung at the Commerce City refuge.

COMMERCE CITY, Colo — Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge (RMA) has a new resident.

The first bison calf of the season has been born at the Commerce City wildlife refuge.

The bison calf, which is called a "red dog," was spotted last weekend.

Located ten minutes from downtown Denver, RMA is home to a herd of more than two dozen bison as well as deer, raptors, songbirds, waterfowl, prairie dogs, and coyotes.

Denver Parks and Recreation (DPR) maintains two conservation bison herds in the Denver Mountain Parks system at Genesee Park and Daniels Park.

The herds are descendants from the last wild bison in North America and were originally established at Denver’s City Park by the Denver Zoo and the City of Denver. The herd was moved to Genesee Park in 1914 and expanded to Daniels Park in 1938.

In March, 35 bison from Denver were returned to tribal nations across the country. Many tribes consider the animal sacred, but were stripped of their herds hundreds of years ago.

Of the 35 bison, 17 are being returned to the Northern Arapaho Tribe in Wyoming, 12 to the Eastern Shoshone in Wyoming and five to the Yuchi Tribe in Oklahoma. One additional bison will be given to the Tall Bull Memorial Council in Colorado. 

The donation of Denver Mountain Parks bison to American Indian Tribes and American Indian nonprofit organizations will continue through 2030.

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