Polkadot is a network of interoperable but independent blockchains that share security.

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We offer multiple ways for DOT holders to earn Polkadot participatory rewards:

Polkadot Delegation

Delegation Instructions

Before you start

Please be sure you have claimed your DOTs. If you need help claiming your token, follow this guide.

1. Bond Your DOT

  1. Go to Polkadot UI. Be sure that the Polkadot network is selected in the top left corner.
  2. Click STAKING in the left-hand navigation
  3. Select the account actions tab at the top of the screen
  4. Select STASH at the top right of the screen
  5. In the modal, select your stash account. If you have a separate account you will use as the controller, select it as the controller. Otherwise. you can set your stash account as your controller (most common).
  6. In the value bonded field, input the amount of DOT you’d like to bond
    If you’d like to bond all of your DOT, leave .1 DOTs in your stash account for transaction fees
  7. Select your preferred payment destination:
    - Select Stash account (increase the amount at stake) to compound your rewards on your Stash account (most common), or
    - Select Stash account (do not increase the amount at stake) to leave your rewards un-bonded and spendable in your Stash account
  8. Click Bond
  9. Confirm the correct amount of DOT is being bonded
  10. Enter your password
  11. Click Sign and Submit


  1. Go back to Account Actions screen
  2. Click NOMINATE
  3. Search for and select all validators labeled Bison Trails/Bison Trails #. This will nominate all of the Bison Trails Polkadot validators, distributing stake among them evenly. Alternatively, you can also copy+paste the 16 validator addresses above into the modal.
  4. Click NOMINATE
  5. Enter your password
  6. Click Sign and Submit

Congratulations! You are now nominating the Bison Trails validators.

Bison Trails Managed Controllers

A controller is a 1-to-1 proxy for your stash (where your tokens live). A controller can act on behalf of the tokens in your stash to nominate validators and participate in consensus, without being able to send transactions. This helps protect your funds because your stash account will not need to be accessed often.

Managing a Polkadot controller yourself is time-consuming and difficult. It requires you to take frequent actions to maintain and properly manage your participation effort. If done incorrectly, self-management puts your funds at risk of slashing due to the liveness requirements of the protocol.

Bison Trails’ managed controllers provide increased security and convenience, while reducing the risks of slashing. You retain custody and control of your stash and nominations. Choosing to bond to another controller account is a simple 2-step process within the PolkadotUI. Keep your stash in cold storage where it’s safest and choose a Bison Trails managed controller for accessibility and security.

Follow the above instructions to bond to our validators directly or contact us if you have questions about getting started bonding to a non-custodial Bison Trails controller, managed on your behalf.

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What is Polkadot’s Inflation and Reward Rate?

Polkadot’s inflation rate is dependent on the staking rate of the network. It increases to 10% as the staking ratio approaches 50% (for a reward rate of 20%) and then declines sharply thereafter.

Polkdaot Inflation and Reward Rate
The blue line is the rate of inflation in the network and the green line is the rate of reward (the inflation divided by the staking rate). Source: Web3 Foundation
What are the risks associated with bonding?

Validators can be slashed for misbehavior (e.g. being offline, equivocation). The slashed amount is a fixed percentage. A validator with more stake gets slashed more total DOTs. Since rewards are evenly distributed among validators elected to the consensus group, there is no economic advantage in staking more DOTs than required to be in the active set. In fact, because slashing is proportional, staking excess DOTs increases the loss in the event of slashing.

In general, Polkadot slashing is based on security threat levels:




Level 1 Low security threats such as isolated cases of unresponsiveness 0.1% (or kicking the validator out of the active set)
Level 2 Misconduct that occurs in good faith but is due to bad practices 1%
Level 3 Misconduct unlikely to happen in good faith or by accident, but does not lead to serious security risks or resource use 10%
Level 4 Misconduct that a) poses a serious security risk to the system, b) shows large levels of collusion among validators, and/or c) forces the system to spend a large amount of resources to deal with them 100%
How does Bison Trails’ commission work?

Bison Trails charges a 10% commission on all rewards earned by tokens delegated to our validator. The commission is paid to Bison Trails automatically by the protocol. You can then withdraw your rewards from the protocol directly.

Anything else I should know?

Learn more about Bison Trails and how our platform minimizes the risks of slashing. Please also review our full Digital Asset Rights Delegation Agreement.

Bison Trails

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If you have questions, or if you are interested in running a validator on the Bison Trails platform, please contact us. Our protocol specialists are happy to assist you.