A Texas Safari

OK! Grab your hat and camera — we’re going on a safari!

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A few miles down the road from us is Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, a world-renowned, 1,700 acre wildlife preserve dedicated to the conservation and preservation of endangered animals. Like rhinos and cheetahs and the native Attwater’s Prairie Chicken. Now I’ve never actually been to Fossil Rim as they have a very strict NO DOGS ALLOWED policy, so everything I’m going to tell you and show you is hearsay. But it all comes from the mouth of My Mom Person who has been to Fossil Rim a billion times.

To tour Fossil Rim you can either drive your own car through the 9 1/2 miles of road (don’t bring the dog!) or you can reserve a tour on one of Fossil Rim’s Safari Vans with a tour guide. You can purchase cups of feed to feed the animals that you encounter. I have sampled these special pellets and they are quite yummy! They make me feel tall like a giraffe and swift like a deer!

img385There are over 1,000 animals from 50 different species roaming the hills and pastures of Fossil Rim. No dogs! But they do have wolves. Red Wolves, Mexican Grey Wolves and Maned Wolves. There aren’t any wolves at all in Texas any more. Except at some zoos and Fossil Rim.

But these animals are not here just for the fun of it. Most of the animals are part of intensive breeding programs to help preserve their species. Some of them are actually extinct in the wild!

Rather than me trying to give you all the cool facts, I will refer you to the Fossil Rim Website here.

And I’m going to leave you with some pictures from our tour –

I will tell you that Fossil Rim offers overnight accommodations if you are so inclined. They have a very nice Lodge and a really cool Safari Camp. I have included pictures of both in my picture gallery above.

And since I am, after all, a LIBRARY dog, I have a great book for you to get you in the mood for your Fossil Rim visit.

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African Critters by Robert B. Haas is an incredibly beautiful book for young readers about African wildlife. It was published by Sacova Publishing in 2002. It is a photographic journey with text and photos by Mr Haas. This book is particularly special to Fossil Rim because the Haas Family was instrumental in helping the park build a new cheetah facility some years ago. The Robert B. Haas Cheetah Conservancy was created at Fossil Rim by a very generous grant from the Haas Family Foundation.

A little video about the Rhino program at Fossil Rim —

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22 thoughts on “A Texas Safari

  1. Rhythm, I’m glad you at least got to go to the gate and have that great picture of you taken! It is probably for your safety as well as the safety of the African animals to keep dogs out. What do you think?

    I love how your Mom Person set it up in the bush for you to read about African animals too! I’ll put that book on my list to check out at the library. I’m getting a long list, I’d better get down there and start reading some of these wonderful books you read! And pronto!

    Pretty amazing what they are doing at Fossil Rim Wildlife Center! Thank you for sharing about it. And those Rhinos are B-I-G creatures! I mean in the video they said a newborn rhino weighs 115 pounds! That is one big baby!

    • Thanks Ms Tilton. I’ve been having a good time traveling around the neighborhood, talking with folks and taking pictures. You should come visit sometime and go on a safari! I think you would have a fun time!

  2. Wow – amazing photos! You don’t happen to know what sound a giraffe makes do you? It’s a frequent (and from my point of view, highly amusing) occurrence in our household that the bigger fleshlings have to move quickly on in any “animal noise” type games with the mini fleshling when they get to the giraffe as they have no idea what noise it makes. They had the same problem with the penguin, and resorted to simply quacking. The mini fleshling’s zoological education is therefore being significantly compromised.

  3. The photos are fantastic. I LOVE the elephant eye. I am curious as to the camera you use. It must be a DSLR. You do a really great job taking animal photos. You are also very lucky to live so close t the park.

    I live near a torn down mall that has been a cement desert for nearly ten years. Will be glad to move a bit south where there is a wonderful zoo and aquarium, plus a city always on the move. That empty mall space would have at least been a park by now. You are so blessed: for the area you live and for the company you keep, particularly the four-legged kind. 🙂

    • The Mom Person took most of the photos, but a few came off of Fossil Rim’s Facebook page. That eye is actually a rhino eye and it was taken long ago with a regular Pentax film SLR. We are very lucky indeed to live in such a rich environment. We love Glen Rose! I’m glad that you get to move away from your cement desert. Good luck with that!

  4. Super photos, Rhythm! I am definitely going to hunt for that African Critters book, my kids will love it. I hope you got to see some animals through the fence.

    • African Critters is an excellent book!! Mr Haas did a super job. The pictures are great and the information is easy to read and very interesting! Good luck with your search! I got to see some bison through the fence, but that’s all. Except way in the distance. Those bison are BIG scary looking beasts! I wouldn’t want to be too close to them. It’s probably not such a bad thing that dogs aren’t allowed!

    • I myself did not get to stay there. But I have heard only good things about the facilities. They are air-conditioned cabins right by a watering hole so you can watch animals from your front porch (with the safety of a fence). And they serve you a great breakfast the next morning!! Bacon!

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