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Illinois, where the bison and bobcats roam

Illinois, where the bison and bobcats roam

Thursday's Tribune carried a prominent, captivating photo of something that hasn't been seen for two centuries: a wild baby bison born in Illinois. The calf, trotting behind its mother, was born at the 3,500-acre Nachusa Grasslands, a prairie restoration project near Franklin Grove, 95 miles west of Chicago. Think about it. Better yet, marvel at it. An animal once hunted to near extinction in America by the early 1900s is now grazing on grassland just 90 minutes from the Loop. How? Aggressive but arduous conservation efforts by many people over many decades. The bison, along with magnificent apex predators such as black bears, gray wolves and cougars, belong here. They...