Wisent

related topics
{specie, animal, plant}
{company, market, business}
{work, book, publish}
{island, water, area}
{household, population, female}
{disease, patient, cell}

The wisent (pronounced /ˈviːzənt/) (Bison bonasus), also known as the European bison, is a species of Eurasian bison. It is the heaviest surviving land animal in Europe; a typical wisent is about 2.8 to 3 m (9 to 10 ft) long and 1.8 to 2.2 m (6 to 7 ft) tall, and weighs 300 to 920 kg (660 to 2,000 lb). It is typically lighter than the related American Bison (Bison bison), and has shorter hair on the neck, head and forequarters, but longer tail and horns.

Wisent were once hunted to extinction in the wild, but they have since been reintroduced from captivity into several countries in Eastern Europe. They are now forest-dwelling. They have few predators (besides humans), with only scattered reports from the 1800s of wolf and bear predation. Wisent were first scientifically described by Carolus Linnaeus in 1758. Some later descriptions treat the wisent as conspecific with the American bison. It is not to be confused with the aurochs, the extinct ancestor of domestic cattle.

In 1996 the IUCN classified the wisent as an endangered species. It has since been downgraded to a vulnerable species. In the past it was commonly killed to produce hides and drinking horns, especially during the Middle Ages.

Contents

Etymology

The modern English word itself derives from Old English ƿesend, from Germanic *wisunda (cf. Old Norse visundr, Old High German wisunt, cf. modern German Wisent).

The Latin "bisōn" (whence, in turn, modern English for North American bison comes) is most probably just a borrowing from Germanic.

Full article ▸

related documents
Quetzalcoatlus
Green swordtail
Ardipithecus
Devon Rex
Canary
Harrier (dog)
Bulbul
Show cat
Ecological niche
Vertebrate
Lorisidae
Honey Possum
Cheirogaleidae
Wren
Domestic longhaired cat
Sugar Glider
Bilateria
Daphnia
Archaeocyatha
Larch
Galago
Charadriiformes
Cassowary
Odonata
Porcupine
Flagellate
Quadruped
Turkish Van
Nightjar
Fly