Jill Oatman Live-stream

Influence of Stakeholders in Developing Safety Guidelines for Tribal and Non-Tribal Bison Herd Workers  

Jill Oatman Vansickle, BS, University of Nebraska Medical Center; Ellen Duysen, MPH, Central States Center for Agricultural Health and Safety; Risto Rautianinen, Ph.D, University of Nebraska Medical Center; Clayton Kelling, Ph.D, DVM, University of Nebraska-Lincoln


Learning objectives:
1. Participants will be able to understand hazards associated with herding and handling bison.
2. Participants will be able to identify risks to bison worker safety.
3. Participants will be able to list recommendations given by roundtable attendees.


The bison industry is growing in the central states of the US with many tribal and non-tribal communities introducing herds into their agricultural operations. Few efforts to date have addressed health and safety issues related to bison herd work. Bison workers may have little to no training on the safe handling of livestock prior to working with these dangerous animals. Untrained workers and poor working conditions make bison handling a particularly hazardous occupation. To address the safety concerns of tribal and non-tribal bison workers, a project is underway, headed by researchers at UNL School of Veterinary Medicine with funding from the CS-CASH. One aim of this research project is to develop a best practices guide, covering safe bison herding and handling, and highlighting methods of creating and maintaining safe facilities. To gather expert recommendations, tribal and nontribal stakeholders were brought together at roundtables held in 2019 and 2020. Summary reports were created from each roundtable highlighting the expert presentations, stakeholder’s responses, and roundtable discussion of best practices for protecting bison herd workers and subsequently the animals that they are caring for. Recommendations from the roundtables will be discussed.


Jill Oatman Vansickle’s presentation begins at timestamp 1:20:40.