Every year, over four million people flock to Yellowstone National Park to take in its beautiful landscapes and catch a glimpse of its vast array of wildlife.
But recently, tourists (or as some call them, tourons) are putting these natural places in danger by trying to get up close and personal with the wild animals who live there.
One such tourist was recently highlighted on Tourons of Yellowstone (@touronsofyellowstone), an Instagram page dedicated to shaming the antics of these tourists. This time, the picture is a barefoot tourist approaching a full-grown bison, with three calves nearby.
We probably don’t have to tell you how dangerous this is, but we will. Bison lead the way for animal-related injuries in Yellowstone National Park, and the park requires guests stay at least 75 feet away from the animals at any given time.
Unsurprisingly, bison are incredibly dangerous. Male bison can weigh up to 2,000 pounds and run three times the speed of a person, meaning they have no problem taking someone down. Not to mention, animals with their babies nearby are known for being even more protective, which means aggressive.
But approaching wildlife like this isn’t just dangerous for people — it’s dangerous for the animals. It was just earlier this year that a bison calf was euthanized in Yellowstone after a tourist “rescued” it. And animals that harm humans, whether provoked or not, are often unfortunately euthanized by park staff. Something that no one wants to see happen.
Protecting and respecting these creatures is incredibly important when visiting our natural landscapes. Commenters on the post were quick to take the side of the bison in this case.
“He thinks he’s one with nature,” one commenter jeered.
“With calves around? Do you have a death wish?” another asked.
“I have to hand it to the bison,” another quipped. “They have more patience than I do…”
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