In The Moment ... February 8, 2017 Show 026 Hour 1

Chrissy Meyer is the Communications Director for the South Dakota and North Dakota chapter of the American Heart Association. February is American heart month. She's with us to talk statistics and create awareness.

  • This segment starts at the beginning.

Christopher Phillips is a bestselling author, foremost scholar and specialist in the Socratic Method. His blog can be found at childing.org

Bison Could Become National Mammal

May 3, 2016
Courtesy Wind Cave National Park

Bison could soon become the country’s National Mammal. The US House and Senate passed the National Bison Legacy Act. It’s awaiting President Obama’s signature.

Calving Starts in Custer

Apr 12, 2016
South Dakota Game Fish and Parks

Bison calving season is starting in South Dakota.  That means there are baby buffalo frolicking around places like Custer State Park right now.

The first Custer State Park bison calf of the year was born on April fourth.   Officials say most newly born buffalo come in late April to early May.  They often weigh over 40 pounds at birth and are a light orange color before turning dark brown.

Gary Brendage is the Resource Program Manager for the South Dakota Game Fish and Parks. He says around 400 calves are born in an average season.

As the first calves of the season are born in Custer State Park, Gary Enright, director of the 1881 Courthouse museum, joins Dakota Midday to talk about a creature with a 500,000 year history in North America. Revered, hunted, and nearly dashed  into extinction, the American Bison has a storied history of loss and renewal.

For more photos and videos of South Dakota history, visit our Images of the Past page.

Courtesy Buffalo Field Campaign

The non-profit “Buffalo Field Campaign” is holding rallies near Yellowstone National Park this week. Their goal is to educate the public about Yellowstone’s buffalo herd and protest the long-standing practice of killing buffalo that wander out of the park into Montana. But some in Montana worry the buffalo could harm cattle.

The “Buffalo Field Campaign” was founded in 1997 by Lakota elder Rosalie Little Thunder and Mike Mease. Their goal was to stop the killing of buffalo that left Yellowstone National Park during the winter.

50 Years Of Buffalo, Adrenalin, And Bullwhips

Sep 26, 2015
Rochelle Plocek / Custer State Park

The Custer State Park Buffalo Round Up is 50 years old.   Each year the park corrals its buffalo and sells off some animals to keep the heard from growing too large.   The 50th annual event delighted the huge crowd of spectators as the wranglers on horseback and park personal in vehicles drove the bison across the rolling hills and finally into a large corral.

Charles Michael Ray SDPB

Bison once numbered in the tens of millions in a range stretching across North America from Alaska to Mexico. Many native wildlife species depended on massive herds of grazing bison to shape the ecosystem. By the late 19th Century there were only about a thousand bison left, victims of hunting and western expansion. But today there are some 400,000 buffalo in North America according to the National Bison Association.

Along with being an author, Dan O’Brien is also a wildlife biologist, falconer and buffalo rancher. He’s written six novels and four books of non-fiction. His latest book is Wild Idea: Buffalo and Family in a Difficult Land. It’s an account of efforts to raise buffalo with dignity and respect as a sustainable enterprise in the Cheyenne River Valley. It’s also a love story – of family, friends, the often harsh-landscape of western South Dakota and the American bison.

Wild Idea: Harvesting Buffalo One At A Time

Jul 21, 2014

South Dakota is the largest producer of buffalo in the United States.   

The bison industry in South Dakota is diverse. Buffalo ranchers employ a wide range of methods to manage, slaughter, and process the bison they raise.

On today’s feature story SDPB’s Charles Michael Ray takes a look at an approach by one company to commercially harvest buffalo right in the field and run them through a mobile processing plant inside a semi-trailer.

"The Buffalo King"

Dec 9, 2013

The documentary airs on SDPB-TV tonight at 8:00 p.m. Central.  James “Scotty” Philip, a pioneer South Dakota rancher, is often credited with saving the American Bison from extinction.  His story is told in “The Buffalo King,” a production of Nowlin Town Productions.  Philip and his wife, a Native American, came to Dakota Territory in the late 1800s.  He set out to save the buffalo from extinction by buying a small herd of 74 buffalo.  By the time of his death in 1911, the buffalo herd had grown to more than 1,000.

Art Exhibit Celebrates Buffalo Culture

Nov 1, 2013
Courtesy Badlands National Park


An art exhibit honoring the buffalo and its role in the Lakota culture is the focus of various interpretive events at Rapid City’s Dahl Arts Center.

The Pte` Oyate – or “Buffalo Nation” – art exhibit explores the unique relationship between the Lakota and the buffalo that has existed for centuries.

Craig Howe is director of the Center for American Indian Research and Native Studies. Howe says the importance of having the Pte` Oyate exhibit in the heart of the Black Hills can’t be overstated.

Rapid City Museum Seeks To Preserve Legacy Of Bison

Aug 19, 2013

Buffalo are indigenous to North America. Scientists estimate at one time there were more than sixty-million head roaming the prairies - but after the 1800’s those numbers changed dramatically. Buffalo populations began to swiftly decline - almost reaching extinction. Susan Ricci is the Owner and Director of the Museum of the American Bison in Rapid City - she’s dedicating her time and space to tell the story of the iconic beast.

Buffalo Market Holds Its Own.

Jul 31, 2013

South Dakota continues to be the nation’s biggest producer of buffalo meat.   The market for bison has softened in recent months, but only slightly.  

The demand for buffalo has maintained somewhat continued growth over the past several years.  The trend may buck conventional critics who’ve called the buffalo market volatile.

SDPB’s Charles Michael Ray has this update on the growth in demand for buffalo.

Wind Cave Buffalo Jump Tour

Jul 26, 2013
Courtesy Wind Cave National Park



Wind Cave National Park is opening access to a recently excavated archeological site on Saturday.

Rangers at Wind Cave are offering a three-hour tour of an ancient buffalo jump on land acquired by the National Park Service in 2011.


Buffalo To Roam Southern Badlands Once Again

Jun 12, 2013
Courtesy Badlands National Park

The Oglala Sioux Tribal Council passed a resolution that opens the door for the return of buffalo to the South Unit of the Badlands National Park.

The tribe is working out an agreement with the Park Service to make the Southern half of the Badlands the first ever tribally run National Park.   

Council representative Craig Dillon says restoring buffalo to the South Unit after more than a century is a very positive thing for the tribe.

"The Buffalo King"

Feb 7, 2013

Justin Koehler's new film, "The Buffalo King," is a documentary of James "Scotty" Philip, one of South Dakota's most influential figures.  Often described as the "man who saved the buffalo," Philip was also a study in turn-of-the-century United States History.  Koehler is a Denver-based filmmaker who grew up in Midland, South Dakota.  Private screenings of "The Buffalo King" will take place this weekend in Pierre and Philip.