Abstract - Bison Immobilization Research, South Dakota, 1960
Hart, Ray D. 1961. Bison Immobilization Research, South Dakota, 1960. Pittman-Robertson Project, W-75-R-3; Job Outline, B-10, 1-3. 11 p.
Bison (Bison bison) were effectively immobilized with three different drugs administered from a distance with CO2 operated dart gun. Animals in Wind Cave National Park and Custer State Park were used for testing Sucostrin (succinyl choline choride), Cap-Chur Sol and Cap Chur Gem. The latter two drugs are produced by Palmer Chemical Company and have nicotine alkaloids as an active ingredient.
Forty-seven shots were taken from distances of 10 to 25 yard with only two misses. However, of the 45 hits, only 32 needle penetrations were made. Poor-angle hits, wind, and matted hair reduced the number of injections. Many of the drug adnministrations were underdosages so only 14 animals were knocked down or rendered managaeble. One three year old bull died, but death may not have been the direct result of the drug. Because this bull received a smaller relative dosage than other bison tested, he may have succumbed from choking by regurgitation.
Shooting conditions were the best when there was no wind, when the animals could be approached to within 25 yards or less, and when the dart struck squarely on the fleshy part of the hindquarter.
Did You Know?
Winds caused by changes in barometric pressure are what give Wind Cave its name. These winds have been measured at the cave's walk-in entrance at over 70 mph. The winds at the natural entrance of the cave attracted the attention of Native Americans and early settlers.