Skier Bitten By Coyote
Yellowstone National Park is reporting that a skier was bitten by a coyote Tuesday while cross-country skiing. She was on the Grand Loop Road near the South Rim Drive.
Witnesses transported the 43-year-old woman to the Canyon Visitor Education Center, where rangers provided initial treatment for puncture wounds and lacerations to her head and arm. Rangers then took her to Mammoth Hot Springs by over-snow vehicle, after which she continued on to a medical facility.
Park staff temporarily closed the road, then positively identified and killed the coyote. The coyote is being necropsied and will be tested for rabies.
“Encounters like these are rare, but they can happen. We suspect this coyote may have been starving due to having porcupine quills in its lower jaw and inside its mouth. Its young age likely led to its poor condition and irregular behavior,” said wildlife biologist Doug Smith.
Park officials remind the public the the wildlife in Yellowstone National Park are wild and unpredictable. Be aware of your surroundings. Never feed wildlife. Animals that become dependent on human food may become aggressive toward people and have to be killed. Keep all food, garbage, or other smelly items packed away when not in use. Stay 25 yards (23 m) away from all large animals - bison, elk, bighorn sheep, deer, moose, and coyotes and at least 100 yards (91 m) away from bears and wolves.