BUFFALO MIGRATIONS IN THE CANADIAN PLAINS

TitleBUFFALO MIGRATIONS IN THE CANADIAN PLAINS
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1976
AuthorsMoodie, DW, Ray, AJ
JournalPlains Anthropologist
Volume21
Pagination45-52
ISBN Number0032-0447
Abstract

This paper examines the seasonal movements of buffalo in the Canadian Plains during the fur trade period. Using the primary accounts of fur traders and missionaries, it demonstrates that a regular migration into the parkland in winter, and back onto the prairie in spring and summer, was characteristic of buffalo movements in the region. The migration into the parkland in winter was initiated by the need for shelter. The specific temporal and spatial manifestations of this general movement, however, were conditioned from year to year by a variety of factors whose effects were largely predictable to both the aboriginal and non-aboriginal residents of the region. Most important among these factors were winter mild spells, heavy snow, hunting pressures and fires.