Yellowstone National Park is widely famous for a lot of interesting reasons. However, it is not nationally famous for routine bison traffic although it does frequently occur. Nevertheless, park-goers experienced unusually backed-up traffic as one brazen bison decided to take a stroll down the park’s main road.
According to The Herald Sun, bison traffic jams are actually pretty common in Wyoming’s internationally famous park. The outlet stated after the video made headlines Wednesday, another one of the sleepy creatures napped in the middle of the road Thursday. Park-goers shared photos and videos of that particular bison as well which you can see here.
According to park representatives, these traffic jams happen all the time as the animals are used to the cars and people. Yellowstone National Park Trips even said the bison seem to know “the right-of-way” on the park roads. Additionally, there are more than 4,680 bison occupying the national park. So it stands to reason the roads often intersect with bison herd travels. And because they are unafraid of the people who roam the park, sometimes following the paved roads is easiest for them.
Yellowstone National Park Trips’ website also said visitors should not honk at the bison and to “save the honking for the city.” They further explained that bison can be aggressive when provoked, and may weigh up to two thousand pounds and maxing out at a speed of 30 miles per hour.
Yellowstone National Park Saw a June Park Visitor Hospital-Bound After a Bison Encounter
This past June saw a Yellowstone National Park visitor flown to an Idaho Falls hospital after she encountered a bison. Known for being North America’s largest land mammal, the woman sustained significant injuries.
An NBC article referenced a 2018 study that says the Yellowstone’s bison injure one or two people per year. However, the encounters are usually provoked when park visitors approach them. The park emphasizes the importance of remaining at least 25 yards from the large, hoofed creatures.
Nevertheless, sometimes encounters, especially when driving at night through the park, are unavoidable. A mid-July incident saw a Nissan Armada collide with one of the park’s bison. The vehicle killed the animal and demolished the front of the front end of the vehicle. One park regular claimed that including the most recent collision, four park bison died after collisions with night drivers.
The regular, Diana Borgmier, begs other park visitors to avoid driving through the park at night. She further emphasized drivers should be incredibly cautious. She said that if there are two cars facing each other going in opposite directions with a bison in the road, the brights hide the animal and there is nothing drivers can do to avoid it at that point.
“It’s like hitting a brick wall,” Borgmier said.
And because the bison are the park’s natural inhabitants, park officials will not fence in the animals. They’ve said they will not qput up barriers to create unnecessary distress for the bison. As with infamous white tailed deer in the northeast, drivers must keep their eyes peeled for any animals at night. It’s the only way both the animals and the drivers involved will remain safe.