Selfridge rancher gives Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa a rare 1 in 10-million white bison

Published: Apr. 18, 2021 at 5:38 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - There’s a one in ten million chance of having a white bison calf. So when leaders of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa heard they were getting a white buffalo, community members gathered for the special event.

“We got some animals coming back,” said Fischer’s Bar 33 Bison Ranch owner Ernie Fischer.

Ernie Fischer filmed this exciting hand over at Fischer’s Bar 33 Bison Ranch.

“We’re ready Tom!” yelled Fischer.

Fischer is loaning his white bison to the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa.

“Just the fact that we have [a white bison] we can share with other Native Americans, just very special,” said Beverly Fischer.

Murton Gillis is the buffalo manager for Turtle Mountain. He told Ernie he couldn’t believe his tribe is getting a white buffalo.

“I said: ‘yes, we would want that right away’ I can’t believe it,” said Gillis.

A white buffalo holds significant culture importance to the tribes. It’s believed the animal will bring hope, healing and good times ahead. When the buffalo arrived crowds gathered to get a glimpse of the rare animal.

“People that never seen it before thought it was a myth, like a unicorn they told us. We actually have one now and they’re like: ‘We can’t believe that was real and we only heard about it through books’,” said Gillis.

The community honored the buffalo with a drum ceremony.

Jeff DesJarlais said it could boost the city’s tourism.

NAME: “That’ll be great for our community to bring it some outside visitors,” said DesJarlais.

The Turtle Mountain tribe plans to breed the buffalo hoping to add another white bison to the herd.

The Turtle Mountain tribe will have the buffalo on display just outside Belcourt.

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