Where the Beefalo Roam — Did They Ever Overtake Lanark County?

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Welcome Cowgirls and Cowboys to your 60 seconds of Carleton Place History brought to you by the Carleton Place Farmer’s Market and the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum.

It’s Farm Day today at the Carleton Farmer’s Market–Can we say EEEhaw?

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Did you know Carleton Place used to be home to the Beefalo? Lee Richardson was the proud owner of Joe’s Pride. Joe’s Pride was one mammoth offspring of Buffalo and Hereford-Charolais breed. Joe’s young son/calf was born weighing 77 pounds alone. The Beefalo didn’t need to be fed grain– existing off of grass and brush and would give 100 pounds more meat than your average steer. Seeing we have lots of brush in Lanark County, it was a no brainer. Trouble is it was easy to breed one cow, but difficult to breed from the offspring. In that newspaper article I read there was was no more word if Mr. Richardson got himself a herd of Beefalo, but maybe that’s a good thing.

You see out on the Grand Canyon’s North Rim it’s estimated that at least 600 beefalo are roaming the land. This thirsty beast can consume 10 gallons each per trip to a watering hole, which means they can drink a water source dry in no time. But the animals’ environmental impact doesn’t stop there. They also defecate at the watering holes and their hefty weight of poop compacts the soil. Their leisurely dust baths and healthy appetites leave the ground bare. Just 2-300 bison using this one water source, can drink it dry pretty quickly. There goes Mississippi Lake!

You think you’ve got problems with deer crossing the highway in Lanark County? If a car gets in the viewshed between a Beefalo calf and its mother she will ram your car to pieces. Can you imagine hitting something like that at night on Highway 7? Try explaining that to the insurance company!  The Beefalo’s numbers started swelling and the Grand Canyon Conservation group has suggested tribes that have traditionally lived alongside buffalo should benefit to help pass on cultural traditions. But all our Indians that lived in Carleton Place on Indian’s Landing have long gone. Heck, there were only 75 of them left at the time. We don’t even have Mr. Bush and his Shooting Gallery anymore who had good guns and air rifles in 1885 in Carleton Place. So you might have to thank your lucky stars that Lee Richardson no longer has Buffalo. But wait— I have heard tales that the Foggy Mountain Farm in Ashton still had them and I called only to find out the gentleman had passed and there was no longer Beefalo in our area. Now the only place you can see Beefalo in Lanark County is a fantasy game played on Playstation 4 and Wii. Long live the Beefalo!

Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum

Email Us: cpbheritagemuseum@bellnet.ca
Call us at (613)253-7013
267 Edmund Street, Carleton Place ON
K7C 3E8

Buy Linda Secaspina’s Books— Flashbacks of Little Miss Flash Cadilac– Tilting the Kilt-Vintage Whispers of Carleton Place and 4 others on Amazon or Amazon Canada or Wisteria at 62 Bridge Street in Carleton Place

About lindaseccaspina

Before she laid her fingers to a keyboard, Linda was a fashion designer, and then owned the eclectic store Flash Cadilac and Savannah Devilles in Ottawa on Rideau Street from 1976-1996. She also did clothing for various media and worked on “You Can’t do that on Television”. After writing for years about things that she cared about or pissed her off on American media she finally found her calling. She is a weekly columnist for the Sherbrooke Record and documents history every single day and has over 6500 blogs about Lanark County and Ottawa and an enormous weekly readership. Linda has published six books and is in her 4th year as a town councillor for Carleton Place. She believes in community and promoting business owners because she believes she can, so she does.

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