Kathleen O'Neal Gear & W Michael Gear

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Tag Archives: bison

Autumn has arrived…

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Autumn in northern Wyoming is so peaceful. It’s a beautiful cool morning here, 46 degrees. Our chestnuts and aspens started to turn color a few days ago and are now shading red and gold. The buffalo love this time of year, as well. The biting flies begin to disappear, and the calves are big enough–300-400 pounds now–that they can pretty much take care of themselves against the mountain lions, wolves, and occasional bear that comes through.  We love this time of year.

Thanks to everyone who wrote to say how much they like the new PEOPLE OF THE SONGTRAIL cover and style.  We agree.  We’re really delighted with the new look.   And it was so much fun to write about early Vikings in North America.

SUN BORN, The second book in the PEOPLE OF THE MORNING STAR series, is due to be released in about a month.  We really hope you enjoy it.  Cahokia at it’s peak was truly an amazing city. 

We wish you all a happy and serene Autumn.

Mike and Kathy

 

 

LANGE IS GONE…

It’s always a sad day at Red Canyon Ranch when we lose an old, old friend. Our 26 year-old bison cow, Lange, died. Her best friend, Clover, and her daughter, Susie Q, did not leave her side through the entire quiet natural death. The mourning ritual for bison is fascinating and heartbreaking. The entire herd gathered around her and took turns licking her body. The herd did not leave her for ten hours, then finally they slowly moved away.

Other bison ranch’s slaughter older cows when they no long calve.  We do not.  Older animals play a vital role in the psychological health of the herd, and they pass on their knowledge to the younger animals in some amazing ways.  We’ve watched old cows lead sick young animals to the medicinal plants that will ease their pain.  Really.  Perhaps more importantly, older animals pass on bison culture, in much the same way the humans and elephants do, by teaching.  

Lange was a special and gentle old soul. We will miss her very much.

Lange at Red Canyon Ranch

Lange at Red Canyon Ranch

Mike and Kathy

Books on sale for the holidays!

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We hope you are having a joyous holiday season. It’s been unseasonably warm in northern Wyoming. For us, that means it’s a whopping 48 degrees this afternoon. The buffalo love this weather. There’s almost no snow cover, so it’s easy for them to get to the tall grasses on the mountain slopes.

Just FYI, our great publisher has placed several of our books on sale for $4.99 for the holidays. We’re delighted by this. If you don’t have these titles and wish to get them, now is the time!

People of the Fire

Betrayal

People of the Morning Star

People of the Weeping Eye

People of the Longhouse

Dawn Country

Morning River

Best Wishes for a wonderful December filled with the warmth of family and friends.

Michael and Kathleen

Young Adult novel set 20,000 years ago…

We have had the best time writing our first Young Adult novel, set 20,000 years ago, at the height of the Pleistocene Ice Age.  What fun to writer about American lions, sabertooth cats, dire wolves, giant bison, mammoths and giant beavers.  Had Mike on tenterhooks (your word for the day) when young Lynx fell into the crevasse.  It’s great inspiration to be able to watch bison out the window while writing about their ancestors who roamed the continent twenty centuries ago.2014-06-22 15.46.29

Yellowstone #bison and #brucellosis…should they be released on public lands across the West?

Brucellosis spinesWonder why so many people are concerned with the Dept. of Interior’s plan to release Yellowstone bison to freely roam the public lands across the western United States?  Even if they release bison without brucellosis (and 40% of bison cows in Yellowstone test positive for brucellosis) the disease is now endemic in the elk population, and many bison, including those in Yellowstone, will contract the disease from elk.  Bison on ranches are vaccinated for this disease.  However, there is no plan to vaccinate these wild bison, or to care for them if they become sick.  If people are eventually allowed to hunt these wild bison, and eat their meat, here’s why you should care:  

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120103135448.htm

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