Shelby Farms horses, bison adapt to cold temps - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Shelby Farms horses, bison adapt to cold temps

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SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. (FOX13) -

The threat of bitterly cold temperatures will take a huge toll not only on us, but our pets and livestock as well.

Meteorologists warn to make sure our pets are warm and safe, but what about those animals that have to live outside?

MORE: Mid-South agencies prepare for extremely low temps
MORE: Winter Weather Resource Guide
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Up there on the hill at Shelby Farms Park are buffalo and probably no animal alive is better prepared for winter than the American bison. But even they know that when the wind blows in from the north in winter time, find something, like a stand of timber, to make things more comfortable.

Just over the hill from the herd of buffalo are the farm's riding stables. Here, too, the herd is ready for winter.

Unlike humans, animals don't have to have heavy coats, gloves, and hats to keep warm in really cold weather. They grow a winter coat.

"They got everything that they need and if it gets really cold they will find a place to get behind," said Jim Hall. "You can watch horses always turn its butt to the wind and will stand there and find something to get behind. On a flat hill you got a problem but still it won't hurt them. They can stand it below zero."

That is not to say horses don't need a little help.

"The only thing we need to provide is hay feed and a lot of fresh water, and we've got that out there in the pond," Hall said. "Should be okay."

"People don't think about the fact that God designed these creatures to survive in the elements," said J.B. Farrell. "whether it's in the heat of South Texas or a blizzard in Montana they are going to adapt accordingly. They grow a winter coat as need be and just as happy and content."

So while it may get colder than 20 degrees over the next few days we can all take heart that it will not come close to winter in Montana,

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