Dan Wenk

Signs abound in Yellowstone warning of the dangers of approaching wildlife too closely.
Eric Whitney

The summer tourist season is just now getting into full swing, and already there have been two fatal accidents at Yellowstone National Park. There's also been at least one severe burn in one of the park's geyser basins, and people around the world have heard about the tourists who put a baby bison calf in the back of their car in May. I asked Dan Wenk, the superintendent of Yellowstone National Park, what's going on.

NPS is proposing to send some bison to tribal land rather than slaughter.

Yellowstone National Park is trying to take a new direction in bison management. The National Park Service has a plan to shift away from its nearly-annual practice of sending bison to slaughter to control population growth.

Bison at the Stephens Creek Capture facility north of Yellowstone Park in 2015.
Jim Peaco (PD)

Bison-watchers around Montana are on alert. Yellowstone National Park has proposed a new plan that could help reduce the number of wild bison shipped to slaughter every year. Public comment on the plan ended in February, and park officials say a final decision will be issued soon.  

Bison at the Stephens Creek Capture facility north of Yellowstone Park in 2015.
Jim Peaco (PD)

Federal, state and tribal officials have agreed to kill as many as 600 to 900 Yellowstone National Park bison this year.

Jim Peaco, via YNP

Yellowstone National Park has identified the hiker who is believed to have been killed by a grizzly bear late last week. Park Superintendent Dan Wenk says he was from Billings.

"Lance Crosby was an employee of Medcor, our concession facility that provides medical services here in the park.  (He was) 63 years old, had been in the park with Medcor for approximately 5 years" Wenk said.