Bison / American buffalo; photo © James Ownby: My View of Nature (all rights reserved; used by permission).
Official State Animal of Oklahoma
Oklahoma designated the buffalo (American bison) as the official state animal 1972. The American bison is also a state symbol of Kansas and Wyoming, and on May 9, 2016 was designated the official mammal symbol of the United States.
The buffalo, or American bison (Bison bison) is an integral part of American history; no other wild animal has played such a significant role in human affairs. The Native American tribes of the Great Plains relied on buffalo for food, shelter, clothing, and as a powerful spiritual symbol.
A bull buffalo can weigh up to 2000 pounds and stand 6 foot tall at the shoulder. Buffalo once roamed the American prairie by the tens of millions and provided a way of life for the Plains Indians. But European settlers hunted buffalo to the brink of extinction - it's estimated that between 300 - 500 animals remained when the federal government passed stricter game laws in 1889.