The animals, many of species from far off Africa, will come right up to your car for free food.
Stephenville, Texas (zip code 76401) was our base of operations for this excursion. Here we drive north from our motel to access Highway 67 for the drive to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center (near to the small town of Glen Rose). The horizontal traffic lights were a novelty for us although we had seen them before (I think in parts of Utah).
After entering the center and paying the admission fee (about $20 per adult for this non-profit, conservation center), we begin the drive to see and interact with various species of mammals.
Many species are in serious decline around the world because of loss of habitat caused by expanding human populations. I think the world will be a poorer place if and when we lose these species.
There were numerous species of deer and antelope like mammals. A guide to the various species was given to us when we paid.
More park residents.
This view was captured a moment later.
Not surprisingly, the animals congregate by species.
This view, through the windshield of the car, shows a tour (vehicle) for park visitors given and narrated by a guide. The guide was able to access the roads marked “Staff only”.
The animals seek the food we purchased for them at the center entrance. They will come right up to the open windows of your car.
This individual seems to have lost one of his horns or antlers.
Another individual at the same location.
Attracted by the prospect of free food, other animals approach.
A different species seen here.
As the heat of the day comes on (27 July), it is quite natural for the animals to seek the relief afforded by the shade of the nearby trees. (We did this tour before we drove on to the state park to see the fossilized dinosaur tracks, but it was already getting quite warm here at the wildlife center in the late morning.)
A cute deer-like living specimen.
We saw quite a few of these spotted animals on the drive through the center’s land.
Another nearby look as the road passes by trees before curving off into the distance.
We recall to mind the words of the late scholar and mythologist, Joseph Campbell (American, 1904 – 1987): humans experience or feel an “awe before the mystery of being”. Life – in all its diverse forms – is a mystery and is awe-inspiring.
Another shady scene.
This individual concerned me as I feared his antlers might scratch the car as he came close for food (which I tossed out to him).
Literally, only an arm’s length away now. Needless to say, the families with young children were enjoying this interaction with the various animals.
Waiting for the car ahead to move on after its pause with this next species.
A ram of some species.
Giraffes are a favorite for visitors.
This individual stretches down to eat right out of the hands of the driver. The center staff instructed us to only allow giraffes to eat out of our hands. All other species were to be thrown their food. (Of course, we washed our hands later.)
Our turn! Here he/she comes.
This is the view right before the giraffe lowers its head for a snack.
Time to have your palm made wet by his/her tongue.
Moving along now to the car behind us.
. . . . to be continued . . . .
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