03/28/2013 12:59 EDT | Updated 05/28/2013 05:12 EDT

Elk Island National Park's Wood Bison Herd Transferred To Russia


FORT SASKATCHEWAN, Alta. - Another herd of wood bison from Elk Island National Park is roaming in Russia as part of an international conservation project.

Federal Environment Minister Peter Kent says 30 of the animals were transferred from the Alberta park to the Republic of Sakha last week.

It's the third time bison from Elk Island have been sent to the Lensky Stolby Nature Park.

Previous tranfers occurred in 2006 and 2011.

About 120 of the beasts now make their home there.

Russian officials were in Canada to observe the selection and preparation of the bison, which were flown out from Edmonton International Airport on March 21.

Elk Island was established as a national park in 1913. Plains bison and, later, wood bison, were brought to the fenced park to establish disease-free conservation herds.

Bison from the park have been provided to conservation areas across Canada and internationally.

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