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Article appearing in Ramona Sentinel on April 6, 2000

First grade students at James Dukes Elementary school got an up-close look at live buffalo on a visit to Star B Ranch in Ramona late last week.

Where the buffalo roam

A group of first grade students from James Dukes Elementary School got a glimpse recently of what it's like to roam with the buffalo.
     Led by teacher Jane MacInnes and student teacher Holly Mefford, they took a 30-minute field trip on March 30 to attend Star B Ranch's new "Roam with the Buffalo Educational Program."
     Star B Ranch has been a working buffalo ranch since 1979.  While on the ranch, the students observed four buffalo that had been brought in from the main herd for the occasion.  The students learned about the history of the American bison, and how the animal was used primarily for food, shelter and survival by the Plains Indians.  They also were introduced to the ranch's "friendly" buffalo, Tatonka, who was orphaned at birth and raised by Denice Childs with her husband Ken, who manages the ranch.
The 22 students learned how the bison became almost extinct before breeding stock programs such as the one at Star B Ranch helped replenish the herds.  And the first graders got to taste Star B's gourmet buffalo dogs and hear how the ranch markets its bison meat products to grocery stores in Southern California.
     Star B Ranch, currently not open to the public, is accepting elementary school field trips for its "Roam" program on a limited basis to educate youth about the bison's role in American history.  Its educational web site is www.starbranch.com or call Paul Mefford, 1(800)9-Buffalo.