Ways to Stay Safe Near Wildlife: Creating a Truly Memorable Experience

National parks are some of the best destinations for people who love the outdoors and the chance to catch a glimpse of local wildlife. But while some of these animals can look cute in pictures, close encounters with them in real life can be dangerous. Before you go on your trip to try and spot some moose or even bears, here are a few ideas to stay safe near wildlife.

Stay on Marked Paths and Keep Your Eyes on the Road

Single elephant walking in a road with the Sun from behind
Image Credit: Shutterstock / Carlos Caetano

Animal attacks are certainly a real issue that you want to avoid in the outdoors. Some of the more common accidents, though, happen when people get distracted while driving in these areas. If you’re looking at some deer passing by, you may end up in a ditch. Even if you’re not driving and instead prefer to trek the wild outdoors, stay on the marked paths. That’s the best way to keep safe.

Respect The Animal’s Space

Watching Bison from car window
Image Credit: Shutterstock / Tiffany Noel Videography

This is the main thing that you want to do to avoid problems. If you encounter an animal, it’s usually best to admire it from afar and leave it be. Any type of animal can turn violent if it feels threatened—invading their space can make them feel threatened in quite a big way. You may want to get up close and personal to have a good look, but that can be a very bad idea.

Know What to Expect

Woman tourist on safari-tour in Africa, traveling by car in Tanzania, watching wild animals and birds in the National park Ngorongoro.
Image Credit: Shutterstock / soft_light

Are there bears where you’re going? Could you encounter plenty of mosquitoes at night? It’s always essential to know what you’re in for before you get there. With this information, you can seek recommendations on how to stay safe if you encounter a particular animal. It’s even more important when these animals can cause life-threatening injuries. Even if it’s just mosquitoes that you’ll contend with, make sure you’re prepared to deal with them. Being ready for anything that nature might throw your way is by and large the most important tip to stay safe near wildlife.

Follow The Recommendations, Particularly Regarding Food

Black bear getting into household garbage on garbage day
Image Credit: Shutterstock / Tom Middleton

Many horror stories people have experienced, particularly within national parks, start with improperly storing or disposing of food. Food attracts all sorts of animals. In certain parks, this can mean wolves, coyotes, bears, and so on. It goes without saying that you’ll want to stay out of the way of these animals at all costs. One of the best ways to ensure they don’t come to you is to store and dispose of food properly.

Dress Appropriately

Portrait of a happy woman hiker standing on the top of mountain ridge against mountains
Image Credit: Shutterstock / DavideAngelini

Don’t ever wear uncomfortable clothes or shoes that are not suitable for the outdoors. Sometimes, you’ll have to run away from something to stay safe. If that happens, you’ll be glad you’re wearing the right gear. This tip also applies to the mosquito issue mentioned earlier. Sometimes, even if it’s hot outside, you can benefit from wearing a long-sleeved shirt. These things can change depending on where you go, but you get the idea.

Stay in Contact With Rangers & Staff At the Parks

Female blond National Park Ranger hands out brochure through window at Bryce National Park, Utah
Image Credit: Shutterstock / Joseph Sohm

You know the phrase “rules are meant to be broken?” Well, that’s not one that you’re going to want to live by in these places. The best thing you can do is stay in contact with rangers and people who are there to help. Know where you can go and get help if something happens. Being proactive with finding exit routes and things of that nature can go a long way in helping you stay safe near wildlife.

Mario Perez

Author: Mario Perez


Mario is a seasoned journalist who’s worked with multiple publications over the years. He has a passion for looking for that story within the story itself. When he’s not actively looking for breaking news, he enjoys playing and watching sports.

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