YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK (FOX 11) - The bison calf that was put in a car by tourists at Yellowstone National Park has been euthanized.
Two tourists visiting the park reportedly put a bison calf in their car last week because they were "seriously worried the calf was freezing and dying."
The National Park addressed the story on its Facebook page today, saying that park rangers tried repeatedly to reunite the newborn bison calf with the herd, but the efforts failed. They said the calf had to be euthanized because it was abandoned and causing a dangerous situation by approaching people and cars along the roadway.
The Facebook post also said, "in terms of human safety, this was a dangerous activity because adult animals are very protective of their young and will act aggressively to defend them. In addition, interference by people can cause mothers to reject their offspring."
According to East Idaho News, a father and son pulled up to the ranger station last week with the bison calf in their SUV.
"They were demanding to speak with a ranger," witness Karen Richardson told the paper. "They were seriously worried that the calf was freezing and dying."
Another witness, Rob Heusevelet, said they "didn’t care" when they were told they weren’t allowed to pick the bison up, East Idaho News reported.
"They sincerely thought they were doing a service and helping that calf by trying to save it from the cold," Heusevelet said.
Law enforcement rangers were called and the tourists, who were from another country, were ticketed.
Yellowstone visitors are not allowed to approach wildlife and must stay at least 25 yards away from large animals, according to the National Park Service website.
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