The American bison—also known as the buffalo—holds great significance to many Native American people and cultures. Although bison populations have grown since their near destruction in the 19th century, the last remaining wild bison are under threat by the National Park Service’s Yellowstone management plan. Native representatives have had only a limited advisory role in creating the plan, and a number of Native individuals and advocacy groups have spoken out against it. This essay explores the possibility of applying the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act to living animals for the first time, categorizing the bison as “objects of cultural patrimony” in order to facilitate repatriation and shift management authority to tribal representatives.
Recommended CitationSaylor Soinski, Repatriating the Buffalo: NAGPRA’s Applicability to Yellowstone Bison Management, 40 Pace Envtl. L. Rev. 428 (2023)
Available at: https://digitalcommons.pace.edu/pelr/vol40/iss2/6