Wild and woolly, the bison thriving in the New Forest after being re-introduced to Britain


'Temperamental': Park manager Jason Palmer warns that the huge bison can go from calm and placid to 'full attack mode' in seconds

Deep in the forest, the thunder of mighty hooves announced a momentous arrival. Woolly bison, the largest European land mammal, are back in Britain.
Three young males from a captive breeding programme have been introduced to the New Forest Wildlife Park near Longdown, Hampshire.
It is hoped they will soon have some female company so the park can begin breeding its own herd of the 6ft-plus beasts which became extinct in the wild in 1919, with a worldwide captive population of only 54.

On the brink: The majestic animals' population is growing after being hunted close to extinction in the early 20th century

Park manager Jason Palmer warned: ‘They weigh about a ton and they’re quite fast – you should never try to outrun them.’
‘They are quite temperamental animals but quite fascinating as well - one minute they can appear calm and placid and the next they can be in full attack mode.’
The trio are all aged three to four years and have been included in a captive breeding programme which is hoped will lead to more European bison across their native continent in the future.
‘They are the biggest land mammal in Europe and are magnificent to look at,’ said Mr Palmer.

source: dailymail