At least two adults are visible in the video. One of the adults shields himself by standing behind the group of youngsters. An older man can be seen standing alone away from the crowd. The video shows the children creep up close to the beast. The man behind the camera can be heard saying as the youngsters approach the bison: "Oh my gosh, oh my gosh! He's friendly."
As the children approach, the bison stops feeding and looks agitated. The older man who stands alone away from the crowd grows visibly wary. He reads the body language of the bison correctly and moves away to a safer distance. Another adult can be seen filming the encounter at a safe distance as the children come dangerously close to the bison.
We hear the cameraman say as the atmosphere gets tense: "See his head movements, see him gesturing? He's saying 'I will get you, I will get you'." But rather than warn the children to stay away from the animal, he goads them on, saying, "Touch him on the head."
What is most upsetting is that the youngest and least experienced in the group expose themselves while the older, wiser ones take precautions to run at the first sign of trouble. Note how the older boy at the head of the crowd cleverly executes a precautionary flanking movement to position himself for a run and how in the process he exposes the two youngest members of the group who are too inexperienced to take the right decisions.
The adults are the first to run when the bison charges. It isn't surprising that when the beast charges he picks the smallest member of the group who was most exposed to its charge. Luckily, the youngster is fleet footed, and clever. He leads the large lumbering beast in a circular chase to shake it off. Someone shouts "Justin run!" as the beast chases the boy.
Shockingly, the adult in blue vest appears to think it is all a fun game. The Daily Mail
reports that a comment on the West Yellowstone Chamber of Commerce Facebook page reads: "This video is one that makes us angry, especially at the irresponsible person behind the camera urging the children 'to go ahead and touch him.' This group has no idea how incredibly lucky they were that no one was injured or killed."
user, JetMechMA, comments: "The father should be charged with criminal neglect of his kids for this. The camera man whoever he is, is STUPID. He says that he notices the bison's threatening movements... that should have told him right there to turn around and GET OUT of there... to get those kids OUT of there. It's Psst?... hey kids, step back. Get out of there. Back away from the bison. No sudden movements but back away from the bison. Stay clear of the animal. "