Yellowstone Bison Gores 72-Year-Old Woman Who Approached it Repeatedly
A 72-year-old California woman was hospitalized last week after repeatedly approaching a Yellowstone National Park bison for photographs before the animal gored her.
She got within 10 feet of the bison multiple times before it turned on her, park officials announced Monday. Rangers treated her at the scene before the woman was flown to Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center.
“The series of events that led to the goring suggest the bison was threatened by being repeatedly approached to within 10 feet,” said Yellowstone’s Senior Bison Biologist Chris Geremia. “Bison are wild animals that respond to threats by displaying aggressive behaviors like pawing the ground, snorting, bobbing their head, bellowing, and raising their tail. If that doesn’t make the threat (in this instance it was a person) move away, a threatened bison may charge. To be safe around bison, stay at least 25 yards away, move away if they approach, and run away or find cover if they charge.”
Park officials say there are no additional details to provide and the incident is under investigation.
But they want to remind everyone that animals inside the park are wild, meaning they can be aggressive, territorial and unpredictable.
Visitors should maintain a 25-yard distance from all large animals including bison, elk, bighorn sheep, deer, moose and coyotes.
A distance of at least 100 yards should be maintained from all bears and wolves.
If necessary, visitors should turn around and go the other way in order to avoid getting too close to an animal.