Hunt on for Tyson the Bison whos been running rampant in town for nine months

Authorities in Illinois, USA, have launched a hunt for "Tyson the Bison", who's been running rampart for the past nine months.

The massive animal – weighing a whopping 1,300lbs (590kg) – has been on the loose in the Lakewood Forest Preserve since escaping from a trailer in September last year.

The bison – nicknamed Tyson by the Lake County Sheriff's Office and Billy by the members of the public – has proved very elusive so far, despite her owner Scott Comstock, working hard to lure her into a barn for safe capture and to return her back to the farm.

He said: "She is so smart and so alert that when you get close to the door, she beats you to it."

Authorities have now become involved and have launched a concentrated effort to re-capture the giant beast by the end of the month.

John Tannahill, director of public safety at the Lake County Forest Preserves, told WGN-TV: "The goal is to have the farm animal removed by Memorial Day weekend, when preserve attendance traditionally increases.

"The safety of our users and the animal is our number one priority. Bison is considered domestic livestock. Therefore, a forest preserve is not an appropriate home."

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The director added that if the bison is not captured by the end of the month, then the owner could face potential fines of $500 (£400) per day, as it could become dangerous for humans, recommending that people and animals do not try to approach, capture, chase or attempt to pet the animal.

He explained: "With the busy summer season approaching, we have to get the bison off the property for everyone’s safety.

"Our major concern is safety. We don't want anybody accidentally injured – it's a big creature."

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