In case you needed yet another reason not to taunt animals 10 times larger than you, here you go: A man visiting Antelope Island State Park in Utah provoked a 1500 pound bison and the bison, being a bison, rammed the man into a nearby fence.
"This person is very, very, very lucky that he wasn't killed," said assistant park manager John Sullivan.
Sullivan said the man seemed uninjured immediately after the ordeal, and "other than being a little dusty ... embarrassed and shell-shocked," he was "none the worse for wear."
Yes, shell-shocked seems to be a good way to describe the feeling of surviving an attack from an animal that weighs almost a ton. Witnesses to the attack said the man went out of his way to attract the attention of the bison, which was on its way elsewhere.
"The [bison] had gone through the gate section that's located real close to where he got hit and looked like he was going to run off the field," Wayne Ebenroth of Boise, Idaho, said during an interview Wednesday on KSL NewsRadio. "He had to have done something to catch the [bison's] attention, because that's when he turned around and decided to pay him a visit."
Ebenroth is the same person who snapped the above photo. He started taking pictures when he noticed several people gathering near the bison and – thankfully for us all – didn't stop until after the attack. ""[The bison] just was not comfortable with how close he was hanging out with him," Ebenroth said.
Park officials decided not to cite the man, saying it would "add insult to injury." The man, who wasn't identified, denied provoking the animal, instead saying he just raised his arm. Sure.
Since bison attacks seem to be increasingly common (as in, I've now seen visual documentation of two), here's what you should do if you encounter a bison in the wild, courtesy of our friends in Canada: "Never try to chase or scare bison away. It is best to just cautiously walk away." Seems obvious, but based on the evidence above, maybe not.