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The Return of Tatanka and Pte: A Story of Culture, Community, and Healing

Institute for a Sustainable Future
February 2, 2023
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
WSLR 116


Join Dr. Michel Kohl from the University of Georgia for a discussion on indigenous wildlife work co-sponsored with ISF, FNR and the Native American Educational and Cultural Center (NAECC).

Abstract: From time immemorial, the buffalo served the foundation of Native American society through trade, sustenance, shelter, and ceremony.  However, in less than 100 years, European social and economic pressures nearly drove the species to extinction.  By 1890, the buffalo was no longer found on my home reservation, the Fort Peck Sioux and Assiniboine Reservation of northeastern Montana. By 1902, only 26 wild plains buffalo remained across all of North America.  For over a century, bison were absent from this landscape, but in 2001 restoration began in earnest when the first 100 animals returned to the reservation. Then in 2012, Fort Peck welcomed home the first genetically-pure, disease free bison from Yellowstone National Park.  Since then, Fort Peck has served as the epicenter for bison recovery across tribal lands throughout the U.S. and Canada. In this presentation, Dr. Kohl will review this history and discuss the implications of tribal bison recovery on the culture, economy, and ecosystems of tribal and non-tribal lands.

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Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907 (765) 494-4600

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