Yellowstone National Park officials say a bull bison tossed a 9-year-old Florida girl into the air when the animal charged a group of about 50 tourists. Park officials say the bison rushed the group Monday after some of the tourists approached to within 5 to 10 feet of the animal over at least 20 minutes.
The Odessa, Florida, girl was taken to Old Faithful Lodge by her family for treatment by emergency personnel. She was later taken to a clinic and released.
A video of the incident appears to show a man and woman run away from the animal as the little girl is thrown high into the air by the bison.
Park officials did not disclose the extent of any injuries. The incident occurred near Observation Point Trail, in the area of Old Faithful Geyser.
Injuries of tourists by bison and other wildlife occur regularly in Yellowstone, which gets about 4 million visitors annually. Last year, aby a bull bison in the park after a crowd of visitors got too close to the animal.
The National Park Service (NPS) advises visitors should never be less than 25 yards from most wildlife. Predators like wolves and bears require greater caution and a minimum distance of 100 yards. The NPS rule of thumb is, "If you cause an animal to move, you're too close," noting that it is "illegal to willfully remain near or approach wildlife, including birds, within any distance that disturbs or displaces the animal."
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