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Extinct Long-horned Bison & Ancient Bison (Bison latifrons and B. antiquus) Fact Sheet: Distribution & Habitat

Extinct Long-horned Bison & Ancient Bison (Bison latifrons and B. antiquus)

How Do We Know This?

Scientists use knowledge of the earth's rocks, global plate movements, and the chemical process of fossilization to make sense of fossil distribution patterns and ancient habitats.



B. antiquus: North America, mainly in southwestern U.S., but also in Canada, Mexico and Central America. (McDonald 1981)

B. latifrons: United States, especially coastal California, Great Plains, Texas coastal plains, Florida. (Mcdonald 1981)

  • Few fossils from forested southeast and southwest
  • May have been present in Canada and Alaska, but glacial activity could have destroyed evidence.

B. antiquus fossils much more common than than B. latifrons.


Bison latifrons: may have inhabited heavily wooded and forested habitats (McDonald 1981)

Bison antiquus: probably inhabited open woodlands or savanna (McDonald 1981)

Page Citations

McDonald (1981)

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