Wildlife Park

I had no idea there was a Wildlife park near my parents house in Italy TX.  (Fossil Rim Wildlife Center in Glen Rose) Okay, near in Texas terms is an hour drive, but still…  We decided to take two cars Jessica, Doug and their two kids (Rachel and Joey) in one and Melinda, Shanna and I in the other.  Dad drove to the park and with Jessica at the half way point in the park he moved to our car.

DSCN5406 Wildebeest – Connochaetes taurinus

DSCN5412Ostrich – Struthio camelus

He’s looking in at Rachel & Joey in the back seat. This was before we got separated. I was much slower since I wanted to take pictures.

DSCN5417 Ostrich with antelope

DSCN5644Blackbuck – Antelope cervicapra

DSCN5433 Emu – Dromalus novaehollandiae

DSCN5466Addax – Addax nasomaculatus

DSCN5462 Addax – Addax nasomaculatus

We thought the field of Addax  looked a bit like a field of spears from a distance.

DSCN5567Fallow Deer – Dama dama

Ah yes, I’m taking photos out of my side of the car when Melinda says “Do you want to take a picture of this?”  Why yes, yes I did.

DSCN5451 Fallow Deer – Dama dama

Not only is there one in the shade, but his coat really is a dark brown. Fallow deer come in a range of colors.

DSCN5501Fallow Deer – Dama dama

This one was fighting the downed tree branches.  Probably rubbing velvet off his antlers but it looked like an argument to me.

DSCN5469 Sneaky White tailed deer – Odocoileus virginianus

And there in the middle of all of these exotic species was one little deer that didn’t look like the others.

DSCN5470Sandhill crane – grus canadensis tabida

YAY Birds!  We also saw wild turkeys, though they were deep in the shade hiding from my camera.

DSCN5476 Gemsbok – Oryx gazella

These gorgeous gazelles will always remind me of the movie Far Off Place. Reese Witherspoon stars in this when she was quite young. It’s the tale of two teenagers and their native friend who escape trouble by crossing the Kalahari desert.

DSCN5486Waterbuck – Kobus ellipsiprymnus

DSCN5490 Waterbuck – Kobus ellipsiprymnus

DSCN5494Axis deer – Axis axis

DSCN5582 European Red deer – Cervus elaphus

These guys look a lot like our native Elk – Cervus canadensis

DSCN5540Arabian Oryx – Oryx leucoryx

DSCN5549 Giraffe – Giraffe camelopardalis

You could hear the girls in the car in front of us laughing in delight as they fed the giraffe.

DSCN5557Giraffe – Giraffe camelopardalis

I got to feed this one. So gentle, so amazing!  Shanna and I recently watched a Nature documentary on PBS Giraffes: Africa’s Gentle Giants. It was wonderful.

DSCN5612 Aoudad (aka Barbary sheep) – Ammotragus lervia

They walked towards the car looking like a gang ready to cause trouble.

DSCN5597Aoudad (aka Barbary sheep) – Ammotragus lervia

DSCN5599 Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra – Equus zebra hartmannae

Love, love, love Zebras!!!

DSCN5608Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra – Equus zebra hartmannae

DSCN5619 Cheetah – Acinonyx jubatus

Hooray for a telephoto lens.  Dad & Shanna were the first to spot these spotted cats sleeping the day away under the trees.  I don’t know that I would have been able to find them without their help.

DSCN5635Rhinoceros

If I had to pick a favorite animal from the park it would have to be a Giraffe.  If I have to choose from the deer/gazelle/antelope which predominated then I gotta say I fell in love with the Blackbuck.

— Jenny

The end, by a Blackbuck DSCN5651


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