Two subspecies or ecotypes have been described: the plains bison, smaller in size and with a more rounded hump, and the wood bison —the larger of the two and having a taller, square hump. Furthermore, it has been suggested that the plains bison consists of a northern and a southern subspecies, bringing the total to three. However, this is generally not supported. The wood bison is one of the largest wild species of bovid in the world, surpassed by only the Asian gaur and wild water buffalo. It is the largest extant land animal in the Americas.
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