NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - President Barack Obama has signed a bill into law making the American bison the national mammal of the United States.
The bison, also known as the buffalo, was once ubiquitous in North America, but was virtually hunted and displaced into extinction. The conservation efforts of tribes, states, U.S. Interior Department, and nonprofits have helped the mammal recover.
“The adoption of bison as our National Mammal represents a validation of the many meaningful ways this animal represents America," John Calvelli, an executive vice president at the Wildlife Conservation Society, said in a statement. "As an ecological keystone, cultural bedrock and economic driver, the bison conveys values such as unity, resilience and commitment to healthy landscapes and communities."
The WCS was among several groups that advocated for the passage of the National Bison Legacy Act.