NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Bronx Zoo has welcomed a herd of eight American bison to their new home in New York City.

More: New York City Zoo And Aquarium Guide

The herd was gifted to the zoo by the Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux tribes, of Montana, last year. Members of the tribes visited the zoo to bless the creatures — seven females and one male — in November.

The gift marks the first time a Native American tribe has transferred a bison herd to a zoo.

According to the Bronx Zoo, efforts to re-establish the bison population began in the early 1900s, when the species faced the threat of extinction. The Bronx Zoo has played a role in conservation efforts, sending two herds of bison bred in the Bronx out west in 1907 and 1913 to help the species grow in its natural habitat.

The Bronx Zoo said it hopes to continue its restoration efforts by using the new male bison to help expand their purebred population. The zoo hopes to eventually send a new herd back out west.

The new bison are now on display to the public. For more information, click here.


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