Video of man taunting bison in Yellowstone National Park goes viral

The bison is seen roaming amid stopped traffic – until a man starts ‘harassing’ it, officials say

A man has been arrested in connection to a bizarre incident caught on camera showing a bison being egged on in Yellowstone National Park earlier this week.

Officials said in a statement Friday that 55-year-old Raymond Reinke was arrested Thursday after “he was captured on video harassing a bison,” along Hayden Valley.

In a video posted online by tourist Lindsey Jones, a bison can be seen holding up traffic as he stands in the middle of a two-way road.

That’s when a man wearing a blue T-shirt and shorts steps in.

At first it appears the man is directing the bison to the side of the roadway. But then the man hits his chest with his fists, seemingly taunting the large animal.

The bison then charges the man.

“Oh God. Oh God. I can’t watch it,” Jones can be heard saying in the video, before turning the camera away as the bison nears the man.

People from other vehicles can be heard yelling, and when the camera focuses back on the confrontation, the man is still standing on the road unscathed.

Shortly after that, the pair walk in separate directions.

“Now he’s mad, now he’s going to be mad,” Jones says as the bison walks in the direction of the truck she is in.

The video has been viewed more than 7.4 million times as of Saturday.

According to Yellowstone National Park officials, Reinke, a resident of Pendleton, OR had been travelling to multiple national parks over the past week.

On July 28, he was first arrested by law enforcement rangers at Grand Teton National Park for a drunk and disorderly conduct incident, Wenk said.

Then Reinke headed to Yellowstone, where he was first stopped for a traffic violation where he “appeared to be intoxicated and argumentative,” and was cited for not wearing a seat belt.

“It is believed that after that traffic stop, Reinke encountered the bison,” park officials said.

National park Supt. Dan Wenk called the behavior in the video reckless, dangerous and illegal.

“We need people to be stewards of Yellowstone, and one way to do that isto keep your distance from wildlife.” he said. “Park regulations require people to stay at least 25 yards from animals like bison.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

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