European bison (Bison bonasus)

Standing nearly two metres tall at their shoulders and weighing as much as a car in some cases - up to 1,000kg - the European bison is the continent's largest land mammal. Bison bonasus eat grasses and herbs, and are capable of consuming 32kg each day.

The species is smaller than its American counterpart, with a longer mane under the neck and on its forehead. Both sexes have small horns. The rutting season runs from August to September, which can lead to violent clashes between males jostling for females.

There are two genetic lines of the remaining European bison, the lowland and lowland-Caucasian, numbering about 4,000 globally in captivity and in the wild. Challenges for today’s wild populations include a seasonal lack of food - in Poland’s vast Białowieża forest they are sometimes fed by people in winter.