National Parks Service Issues Wildlife Warning in Funny, Viral Social Media Post

The National Parks Service (NPS) is using some words of encouragement — and possibly sarcasm — to warn visitors about wildlife at the parks.

“Believe in yourself like visitors who believe they can pet a bison,” the NPS shared on X this week, while spotlighting an important safety lesson and subtly poking fun at visitors who possibly get to close to wildlife.

The post, which has over 4 million views, elicited a strong response from social media followers who thanked the NPS for the helpful advice, and laughs.

“Parks is not messing around today,” one social media user joked in a reply. 

While humorous, the post underscores a significant and serious issue of people getting too close to animals, especially bison, caribou, or other large animals, to try and get a selfie or photograph them in the wild. 

In a subsequent post, the NPS directed followers to a post with safety tips and guidance for staying safe near wildlife. 

“Many parks require you to stay a minimum distance of 25 yards from most wildlife and 100 yards from predators like bears and wolves,” the NPS shared in their tips. 

The guide also recommends that food is properly sealed and stored to minimize the amount an animal could smell food from a distance. The NPS also encourages visitors to report to a park ranger if they come in contact with any wildlife, especially if it appears sick or acting strangely. 

Last summer, the NPS issued a wildlife warning and advisory for tourists after several incidents at Yellowstone National Park and Theodore Roosevelt National Park. 

“Park staff would like to remind visitors that bison are large, powerful, and wild. They can turn quickly and can easily outrun humans,” the NPS said in the alert. 

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