Newborn bison calf killed after misguided rescue

Bison calf put in car ultimately killed.

Bison calf put in car ultimately killed.


Author: TrailMob
Date: 05.16.16

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK -- The National Park Service is calling on visitors to Yellowstone to please respect wildlife. The NPS press release comes after a newborn bison calf had to be killed by rangers.

Last week, a park visitor placed a newborn bison calf in their vehicle and drove it to a park facility because they were concerned it was cold and was going to die. The would-be good samaritans ended up cited for the “misplaced concern for the animals welfare.” The park service reports that “interference by people can cause mothers to reject their offspring. In this case, park rangers tried repeatedly to reunite the newborn bison calf with the herd. These efforts failed. The bison calf was later euthanized because it was abandoned and causing a dangerous situation by continually approaching people and cars along the roadway.”

The announcement of the calf’s death comes on the heels of a string of incidents involving visitors getting too close to bison, in some cases even trying pet them. Several recent videos show people getting within arm’s length of adult bison. Each year, bison injure more Yellowstone visitors than any other animal. In 2015, five people were seriously injured after getting too close to bison. Furthermore, adult bison are very protective of their calves and will act aggressively to defend them. “Approaching wild animals can drastically affect their well-being and, in this case, their survival.” said the NPS in regards to the now deceased newborn calf.  

Park visitors are reminded that it is illegal to get too close to wildlife. Regulations requires visitors to stay at least 25 yards away from bison, elk and deer and at least 100 yards away from bears and wolves. “Disregarding these regulations can result in fines, injury, and even death. The safety of these animals, as well as human safety, depends on everyone using good judgment and following these simple rules.”

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