Bison Legacy Act

Bison Legacy Act

    Honor Our North American Bison

    Bison once numbered in the tens of millions across the United States, played a central role in defining the economic and physical development of the American West and were integral to the sustenance of Native American life and culture. Bison are a symbol of our nation’s cultural and ecological heritage; a part of today’s physical landscape; and an economic driver for many Americans.

    The Texas Bison Association announced its support for the National Bison Legacy Act, a bill (S.3248) that if enacted by the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, would designate the North American bison as the National Mammal of the United States.

    The National Bison Legacy Act was signed into law by then President Obama on May 9 2016.  The first Saturday of November is set as National Bison Day.  The Texas Bison Association was pleased to partner with the Texas FFA in sharing the cultural significance of bison with thousands of FFA students and faculty across the Lone Star State.

    The Bison Estray law is now Law!

    For the first time in history, bison are protected under Texas' estray law.

    The law went into effect immediately after Gov. Rick Perry signed Senate Bill 174 on Friday, May 10, 2013. The measure was authored by Sen. Craig Estes, R-Wichita Falls, and was sponsored in the House of Representatives by Reps. Charles Anderson, R-Waco; Charles Perry, R-Lubbock; and Dan Flynn, R-Van.  Both the Senate and the House voted unanimously for the bill.
    The legislative action was the result of three years of work by the Texas Bison Association.  Bison producers in the Lone Star State were shocked in 2010 when 51 bison were shot to death by a King County ranch foreman after they strayed from a neighboring game ranch. Following that incident, a district judge ruled that bison were not covered by the state's estray laws and could be shot as nuisance wildlife.  The new law includes bison in the list of animals covered by Texas' estray law and says that a sheriff or his designee may shoot a stray animal only when a perilous condition exists. If an animal is destroyed, a sheriff must file a legal report recording the incident.
    The Texas Bison Association is most grateful to Sen. Estes, to Representatives Anderson, Perry and Flynn, and to Gov. Perry for their support.  This was a big day for Texas bison and for Texas bison producers.