The Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Bison was released in 2017.

The bison Code’s 5-year review was briefly delayed and completed in 2023. The outcome of the 5-year review can be found here.

Please note that content in the transportation section of this Code, along with additional transportation-related content (e.g., glossary terms) that had referenced or reflected the outdated version of Part XII (Transport of Animals) in the Health of Animal Regulations (HAR), or the now archived Compromised Animals Policy, has been updated to align with the amended regulations, which took effect on February 20, 2020. Hard copies of the Codes that were printed prior to this alignment will not include these updates. For clarity, Codes that have been updated will include a statement on the front cover that reads “Alignment with Part XII (Transport of Animals) of the Health of Animals Regulations: 2021”.

This update process was strictly aimed at revising existing text that no longer aligned with the amended HAR. Every effort was made to respect the original priorities and decisions of the Code Development Committee (e.g., text from the HAR was not added if it was not covered in the original Code). In case of a discrepancy between the hard copy and online version of a Code, the online version shall take precedence.

There are various ways to view the Code:

There are a limited number of hard copies of this Code. NFACC encourages use of the electronic version and does not store hard copies. If hard copies are required, please contact the Canadian Bison Association.


Table of Contents

Section 1 Animal Environment
Section 2 Feed and Water
Section 3 Health
Section 4 Herd Management
Section 5 Handling
Section 6 Transportation
Section 7 On-Farm Euthanasia
Appendix A- Stocking Rates for Pastures
Appendix B- Preventing Escaped Bison
Appendix C- Body Condition Scoring
Appendix D- Bison Flight Zone
Appendix E- Bison Processing Welfare Audit
Appendix F- Orphaned Calves
Appendix G- Transport Decision Tree
Appendix H- Resources for Further Information
Appendix I- Participants
Appendix J- Summary of Code Requirements

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