The bison's presence is magnificent and yet their story is filled with tragedy and played a significant role in Canada's history and people.
The film explores the bison's story in North America from the last ice age to the current day. Bison Return From The Edge Of Extinction tells of Canada's role in the life of bison in North America.
Estimates vary between 30 million to 60 million bison once roamed the plains of North America. Yet the bison were very close to being made extinct, and the film explores how and why this occurred. We revisit the devastating effects the loss of bison had on First Nations people and what followed that shapes today's people.
The Hudson Bay Company and the North West Company, and the story of Ruperts Land are all shaped dramatically by the fur trade and bison and its use in Pemmican making. Why was the fur trade reliant on Pemmican, and why did it contribute to the bison's demise?
The Government's early years of bison conservation were politically motivated, and mistakes made. Preservation of the bison was not what it is today, and the path to today's conservation work is fascinating.
The film aims to be the most thorough telling of the bison from a Canadian viewpoint as it differs significantly from the story told in the United States of America.
The five-part limited documentary series will be completed by the end of 2021.
Elk Island National Park, Alberta.
Grasslands National Park, Saskatchewan.
Banff National Park, Alberta.
Bodo Archaeological Site & Centre, Bodo, Alberta.
Riding Mountain National Park, Manitoba.
Royal Alberta Museum, Edmonton, Alberta.
Bud Cotton Buffalo Paddock - CAF Wainwright, Alberta.
Wainwright District Museum, Alberta.
Manitoba Museum - Hudson's Bay Company Gallery, Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Lower Fort Garry, Saint Andrews, Manitoba.
Fort Battleford, Battleford, Saskatchewan.
Last Mountain House, Last Mountain Lake, Saskatchewan.
Battle of Seven Oaks site, Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Head Smashed In Buffalo Jump, Alberta.
Old Women’s Buffalo Jump, Cayley, Alberta.
Writing On Stone Provincial Park, Alberta.
Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site, Alberta.
Fort Edmonton, Fort Edmonton Park, Edmonton, Alberta.
Wildrose Convention / Bison Show & Sale, Camrose Regional Exhibition, Alberta.
We are very fortunate to have the following persons participate in the film ( In no particular order ).
Dr. James Daschuk, Ph.D. - the Associate Professor University Of Regina and published author of Clearing The Plains Disease, Politics Of Starvation, And The Loss Of Indigenous Life.
Mr. Bill Waiser, B.A, M.A, Ph.D. - A western Canadian historian and a publisher of over a dozen books, many of which have been recognized with various awards and include. A World We Have Lost: Saskatchewan before 1905
Dr. Leroy Little Bear - Blackfoot researcher, Professor, University of Lethbridge, a founding member of Canada's first Native American Studies Department and recognized leader and advocate for First Nations education, rights, self-governance, language and culture. Was instrumental in the Bison Treaty.
Mr. Dan Fox - Advocate for the bison and Blackfoot cultural revitalization.
Chef Shane M Chartrand - Executive chef of River Cree Resort & Casino. Promotes and represents Indigenous cuisine and culture and is a published author of TAWÂW: Progressive Indigenous Cuisine.
Mr. Wes Olson - Bison Management Specialist and retired National Parks Warden for Parks Canada
Mr. Jack Brink - Retired Curator of Archaeology, Royal Alberta Museum & published author: Imagining Head-Smashed-In.
Ms. Courtney Lakevold - Archaeologist, Bodo Archaeological Society.
Ms. Alwynne Beaudoin, Ph.D. - Director Natural History, Royal Alberta Museum.
Mr. Chris Jass, Ph.D. - Curator, Quaternary Paleontology, Royal Alberta Museum.
Mr. Mark Edwards, Ph.D. - Curator, Mammalogy, Royal Alberta Museum.
Professor Duane Froese, Ph.D., MSc, BSc - Faculty of Science, University of Alberta.
Ms. Lauren Markewicz, B.A - Interpretation Supervisor, Parks Canada & public Historian and published author: Like Distant Thunder: Canada's Bison Conservation Story.
Ms. Jennifer Brower - Author - Lost Tracks, Buffalo National Park, 1909 - 1939.
Mr. Matthew Rothenberger - Interpretation Coordinator - Parks Canada - Lower Fort Garry
Mr. Gregory Wilson, Ph.D. - Bison Ecologist, Species Conservation, Parks Canada.
Mr. Rob Found, Ph.D. - Park Ecologist, Elk Island National Park, Parks Canada.
Mr. Ryan Hayes - Bison Coordinator - Grasslands National Park
Ms. Bonnie Spencer - Metis Elder - Metis Nation of Alberta
Professor Frank Tough, Ph.D. - Faculty of Native Studies, University of Alberta.
Professor George Colpitts, Ph.D. - Department of History, University of Calgary & published author: Pemmican Empire: Food, Trade and the Last Bison Hunts in the North American Plains, 1780-1882.
Dr. Maggie Jones, Ph.D. - Assistant Professor, Economics - University of Victoria.
Dr. Donna Feir, Ph.D. -Assistant Professor, Economics - University of Victoria.
Mr. Karsten Heuer - Biologist, Parks Canada Park Ranger & Bison Reintroduction Project Manager, Author.
Mr. Harvey Locke - Conservationist, Writer & Photographer.
Ms. Marie-Eve (Bison Belong ) Marchand - Harvey Locke Conservation Inc, IUCN WCPA Beyond Aichi Task Force VP
Amelia Fay, Ph.D. - Curator of HBC Museum Collection, Manitoba Museum.
Professor Gregg P. Adams DVM, MS, Ph.D., Diplomate ACT, FCAHS - Department of Veterinary Biomedical Sciences, University of Saskatchewan.
Miranda Zwiefelhofer BSc. - Department of Veterinary Biomedical Sciences, University of Saskatchewan.
Mr. Brock Silversides. - Author of Fort de Prairies: The Story of Fort Edmonton.
Mr. Terry Kremeniuk - Canadian Bison Association Executive Director.
Mr. Steven Lunty & Mrs. Michelle Lunty - Chair, Bison Producers of Alberta and Canadian Rangeland Bison & Elk Inc.
Mr. Dean Andres - Vice President Sales & Marketing - Rangeland Bison
Mr. Lawrence Lamouche - Traditional Lands Manager - Woodland Cree First Nation.