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CPAWS celebrates historic return of bison to Banff National Park

ALBERTA – The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (“CPAWS”) celebrates Parks Canada’s reintroduction of Plains Bison to Banff National Park.

After a tumultuous history, and coming dangerously close to extinction in the late 1800’s, Plains Bison (Bison bison) will make a monumental return to the wild in their historic home in the Canadian Rockies.

Parks Canada’s five year pilot project has seen a total of 16 bison, 12 pregnant cows and 4 bulls, re-introduced into the wilderness of Banff National Park’s eastern slopes. CPAWS is encouraged by this reintroduction and sees it as a great example of Parks Canada working to improve the ecological integrity of the Banff National Park. The reintroduction will restore a missing native species and key natural processes.

CPAWS is excited to see the years of work on this project by Parks Canada, the Banff National Park Community, Treaty 6 and 7 first nations, and environmental organizations, be realized. The collaboration on this project continues to be inspiring.

Executive director of CPAWS Southern Alberta Chapter Anne-Marie Syslak says “CPAWS is very supportive of the re-introduction of bison in Banff National Park.  It not only helps restore a more comprehensive complement of species to the park ecosystem, it is of significant cultural importance for the aboriginal people.  Bringing back bison is important because it honors culture through conservation.”

The story of bison is one of both devastation and hope. CPAWS hopes that many can learn from the mistakes of our past, and realize the importance of protecting culture, wilderness, and wildlife in the future.

Find more details about the bison reintroduction to Banff National Park visit. 

For more information, please contact:
Anne-Marie Syslak, Executive Director
CPAWS Southern Alberta


The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society

The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) is Canada’s only nationwide charity dedicated solely to the protection of our public land and water and ensuring our parks are managed to protect the biodiversity within them. Over the last 50+ years, CPAWS has played a lead role in protecting over half a million square kilometres – an area bigger than the entire Yukon Territory. Our vision is to protect at least half of our public land and water so that future generations can experience Canada’s irreplaceable wilderness.

CPAWS has chapters in almost every province and territory across Canada, and two chapters here in Alberta – a Southern Alberta chapter located in Calgary and a Northern Alberta chapter located in Edmonton. As a collaborative organization, CPAWS works closely with government of all levels, industry representatives, and communities to manage our impact on a shared landscape. We also advocate for the creation of parks and protected areas for the benefit of both current and future generations of Canadians.