ANTELOPE ISLAND -- Name three things people can count on in October. How about the World Series, Halloween and the Antelope Island Bison Roundup?
The 26th annual roundup of one of the nation's largest and oldest public bison herds begins early Friday on Antelope Island.
Horseback riders will move the herd of 700 to 750 bison from the southern tip of the island to the handling facility at the park's northern end, said state park officials.
The intent is to be able to complete the drive Friday, they said.
The public can watch the roundup from the Eastside Road leading to the historic Fielding Garr Ranch, said Hollie Brown, Utah State Parks spokeswoman.
"A complete and sweeping view of the action is available from a safe distance," Brown said in a prepared statement. "Bring binoculars for a closer view of the animals and handlers."
Because of the roundup, island trails will be closed Friday and Saturday, she said.
The Eastside Road on the island will remain open to the public.
Those who miss the roundup can visit the bison corrals from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 1-3 and observe as the bison are weighed, blood-tested, inoculated and scanned.
The island bison, with the exception of the newborn calves, all have a microchip implanted behind the ear. That microchip serves as permanent identification and stores the animal's health history.
On Nov. 10, excess bison will be sold to keep the herd population within the carrying capacity of the island's available forage.
That public sale will be held at the Antelope Island State Park bison corrals.
For more information about the roundup, corral work or bison auction, call 801-773-2941.