YELLOWSTONE – A bull bison gored a Yellowstone tourist near the Norris campground on Saturday, June 23, when the man let the bull approach to within a few feet of where he was sitting and refused to move.
The bison tossed the man nearly 10 feet in the air and then pinned him to the ground. The man, in his mid 50s, was visiting the park from Massachusetts. He suffered a broken collarbone, shoulder blade, ribs and a groin injury. He was airlifted to a hospital in Idaho Falls, Idaho and is expected to recover.
Intentionally approaching or disturbing animals violates park regulations, which require visitors to stay 100 yards or more from bears and wolves, and at least 25 yards from all other animals including elk and bison.
Park rangers enforce these regulations, which are designed to protect both people and animals. Officials recommend hikers stay on designated trails, hike in groups of three or more people, carry bear spray and to be alert for wildlife.
The best defense against attacks is to stay a safe distance from wildlife and use binoculars, a spotting scope or a telephoto lens to get a closer look, and never feed, approach, disturb or entice wildlife, including birds, in any way. If an animal approaches you, it’s your responsibility to move a safe distance away, not the animal’s.