Animals Video
European bison

By Katy Gill


Having been hunted to extinction ninety years ago, European bison are making a comeback.

Standing at nearly two metres tall and weighing up to 1,000kgs, the lumbering beasts are the continent’s largest land mammal.

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The animals, also known as wisent, have been reintroduced all across the continent, from Romania’s southern Carpathian mountains to the sandy coastal dunes of the Netherlands.

Programmes to bring back the bison have been culturally and economically important, helping to drive tourism as well as restoring a piece of Europe’s natural landscape.

These bison were filmed in their Dutch home in Kraansvlak, an area of the National Park Zuid-Kennemerland, by accounting manager Sander van Schie in January.

The public have been able to visit the area, and the animals, since 2014.

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Three of them were originally reintroduced to the area in 2007, and since more than 20 calves have been born.

While most have remained in the Netherlands, several have been relocated to Spain.

Sander, 37, said: “I have always had a like for nature, with all its beauty, and I love to travel around, explore and experience nature around the world.

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“But you don’t always have to travel that far to see some remarkable nature. The story of the reintroduction of the bison, an endangered species, proves that.

“I spent an entire day filming the bison when I went, and it was an incredible experience.

“Some Bison wear a GPS necklace, which sends their location a few times a day to give you an indication where they might be.

“With a decent amount of patience and luck, I managed to find them, and even got to within 50 metres to film.”