Four people visiting Lone Elk Park in Valley Park, Missouri, on Sunday were attempting to take selfies with a bull elk when the animal issued a warning, put its head down and charged, goring a woman in the arm.
"It was startling," nature photographer Kent Burgess told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "I saw the dominant bull moving toward them and I tried to yell at them to get away."
The Post-Dispatch reported that the park has signs telling visitors to "absolutely do not approach the elk!" and to remain 100 feet from them.
But two women and two men failed to heed the warning and ignored or didn't hear Burgess when he gave a warning.
"It was startling," Burgess told the Post-Dispatch. "I saw the dominant bull moving toward them and I tried to yell at them to get away."
The elk, too, gave a distinct warning sound to stay away, according to KTVI St. Louis. The elk then approached them slowly before lowering its head, charging at the woman and goring her in the arm.
"There was a lot of blood on her arm and on her face," Burgess told the paper.
"I was so upset. I just want people to know what can happen when you get so close."
Eight days before, a woman that got too close was gored in the back by an elk, St. Louis County Department of Parks and Recreation Tom Ott told the Post-Dispatch. She managed to walk despite an antler making a hole in her back that required a trip to the hospital.
"Some people unfortunately think elk are this gentle, tame animal, but that's just not true," Ott told the paper. "They are wild animals. These people who are walking up to them are asking for trouble."
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