A bison at the Yellowstone National Park attacked on Tuesday a 62-year-old Australian man who came too near the animal. The victim was just three to five feet away from the bison. It was the second incident of a bison attack in the park in less than one month.
On May 15, another bison gored a 16-year-old female Taiwanese student who was posing with the animal for a photo. The two incidents happened at the park’s Old Faithful area. The latest incident took place near the lodge were visitors went near a bison that was lying near an asphalt road, reports CNN.
The Aussie man went near the beast which angered the bison and made it gore the visitor who was taking pictures of the animal. But park spokesperson Amy Bartlett clarifies, “Possibly, the person who ends up being gored or attacked is maybe not the one who is harassing the animal. (The animal) may have been approached all day long … eventually the animal reaches its breaking point and charges people.”
The two goring victims were injured. The Aussie man, who was tossed several times into the air, was airlifted to a hospital for treatment. His injuries were severe but not life-threatening, according to National Park Traveler.
The National Park Service said that goring incidents by bisons happen to Yellowstone visitors every year. To avert attacks, the park management had placed a lot of signs reminding tourists not to approach the bisons too near. The park has between 2,300 and 5,000 bisons.
National Park Service reminded visitors that the animals in Yellowstone are wild, pointing out that “Wildlife should not be approached, no matter how tame or calm they appear.” Barlett adds, “Most people are so excited and continue on their way.”
Visitors often don’t give the bisons sufficient space out of their mistaken belief that animals near a boardwalk or path are tame, Barlett observes. Yellowstone’s management of the herd in its effort to restore the bison species, which are migratory species, include giving the beasts unlimited access to all parts of its habitat.
This is the second incident of a wild animal attack on natural park visitors. On Monday, a lioness attacked and killed Kate Chappell, a 29-year-old American film editor, who was filming the animal with an open car window at South Africa’s Lion Park. She violated the park’s policy that all vehicle windows must be always closed.
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