A Bison Named ‘Tyson’ is Currently Roaming Through Chicago Suburbs

by Jon D. B.

Buffalo Breakout: Lake County IL Sheriff’s Office just hit with the most pun-filled bison escape story Outsider’s ever seen.

With a photo captured by Chicago native Todd Dorn, Lake County Sheriff’s Office has proof of a big ol’ bison roaming the suburbs. Dorn’s photo shows the American bison, affectionately known as ‘Tyson the Bison,’ standing majestically in a forest clearing outside a residential area.

Tyson is actually a cow bison, though the sheriff’s office labels her as a buffalo while news outlets assume she’s a male. There are two common misconceptions here. “American buffalo” aren’t buffalo at all, they’re North American plains and wood bison. And unlike most domestic cows, female bison also have horns like Ms. Tyson here. Now onto those puns and the photo itself.

“This is no bull! Actually, it’s an American Buffalo, fondly given the name ‘Tyson the Bison’ and she’s still on the ‘mooooove,’ as she fled from her ‘farmiliar’ surroundings in September,” posts Lake County IL Sheriff’s Office to their official Facebook.

“She continues to graze across western Lake and eastern McHenry counties! Tyson means you no ‘farm!’ We ‘hoof’ talked to the owners who are hoping for a snowfall, so they can track her and take her into ‘cowstody’ safely,” they continue.

But the puns don’t stop there. “You won’t be able to wrangle her with ‘handcalfs,’ and she can be a bit ‘imbullsive’ so if you see her, please don’t approach her – you can call your local police agency, and we will call the owners for a ‘smooooth’ apprehension!”

Never Approach Bison, Even If a Sheriff’s Office Tells You They’re ‘Domesticated’

According to ABC 7 Chicago, Tyson has been spotted several times in the western Lake and eastern McHenry counties. Her home is a local farm, but she’s been loose since September, Lake County Illinois Sheriff’s Office adds.

It’s quite obvious that the brilliant post above is all in good humor via the sheriff’s office. But it will always be worth repeating, especially for this wildlife tech who has seen bison go rogue, to never approach the species under any circumstances.

Instead, Chicago locals should call police immediately if Tyson is spotted again.

North American bison are immensely powerful mammals and can do terrible damage without ever meaning to. And if they mean to, well, then lookout. There’s no situation in which we feeble humans will ever outrun or outmaneuver this megafauna.

It still shocks me every time I double-check to confirm that bison can, in fact, top 35 mph running. Not only are they as fast as a thoroughbred horse, but they can also turn on a dime and leap tall fences.

In short: Tyson is one bad bison, just like the rest of her incredible kind.