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Bison leaves national park visitor ‘severely injured’ in North Dakota, officials say

Goutham Ganesh Sivanandam via Unsplash

A bison “severely injured” a woman visiting a national park from out of state, authorities said.

The Minnesota woman was at Painted Canyon in Theodore Roosevelt National Park on Saturday, July 15, when she encountered the wild animal, according to a July 18 news release from the National Park Service.

Staff at the North Dakota national park were notified at about 11 a.m.

Park rangers and local authorities responded to Painted Canyon Trailhead, where they found the visitor with “significant injuries to her abdomen and foot,” according to the release. She was treated at the scene, then rushed to a hospital for further treatment.

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“The incident is still under investigation and the exact details of what occurred are not known at this time,” authorities said.

Staff with the national park say visitors should stay at least 25 yards away — “the length of two full-sized” buses — from large animals, including bison. Bulls are known to be aggressive from mid-July through August, the animal’s rutting season.

“They can turn quickly and can easily outrun humans,” officials said.

What to know about bison

Multiple people have been injured by bison.

On July 17, a 47-year-old woman from Phoenix was gored by a bison after she and another person to turned to walk away from the animal in Yellowstone, McClatchy News reported.

In 2022, a 25-year-old woman was gored by a bison and tossed 10 feet into the air at Yellowstone National Park, rangers said. The woman had walked toward the bison on a boardwalk near the Old Faithful geyser and came within 10 feet.

A 34-year-old Colorado man was also gored by a bison while walking near Old Faithful with family when the animal charged toward them, according to park officials.

“Bison have injured more people in Yellowstone than any other animal,” park rangers said. “They are unpredictable and can run three times faster than humans.”

Bison are huge animals that can weigh up to 2,000 pounds and run up to 30 mph, according to the park.

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