Watch careless photographer get on the wrong side of angry bison in South Dakota

Bison in road at Custer, South Dakota
(Image credit: Getty)

A photographer got on the wrong side of a large bison at a park in South Dakota recently, encroaching on the animal's personal space until it charged to drive him back. The encounter, which took place at Custer State Park on September 9, was recorded by another visitor who wisely stayed inside their car.

The resulting video, which was shared on USA Today and photography site PetaPixel, illustrates the dangers of getting too close to wildlife in search of the perfect picture, and was published just days after a woman was gored while passing too close to a herd of bison in Texas,

Rebecca Clark was hiking solo when she encountered the animals, and decided to keep moving along the trail rather than taking a detour around them. One of the animals charged and tossed her to the ground, goring her back.

The photographer was much luckier and avoided injury, but as you can see in the clip below, things could have easily turned out differently. Despite being chased away once, he came back and resumed taking photos just a few feet away from the same animal, which is protecting its young.

Custer State Park is home to one of the world's biggest free-roaming bison herds, and the animals are a major attraction for visitors, but it's essential to give them sufficient space.

The National Park Service advises keeping at least 25 yards (23 meters) away from animals like bison and elk, and appreciating them using a long camera lens or binoculars. See our guide to the best binoculars and monoculars for some affordable options that are well suited to wildlife watching,

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.