Sunday, February 8, 2015

Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, Part I

About 20 years ago when Danelle and I first lived in Texas, we spent a great day at the Fossil Rim Wildlife Center. With my mom in town for a few days and in need of a fun Saturday activity, we decided to make the trip again.

I frankly can't remember when I last shot captive or controlled wildlife. I never went to one of the raptor events back in Colorado, and hadn't been to the zoo since the kids were little. I never even shot in the Butterfly Pavilion. But I brought my big boy cameras anyway, just in case.

Why do I ever consider not bringing those cameras?

American Bison, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
Colorado, Oklahoma, Texas.  The state apparently doesn't matter.  I haven't gotten a great bison shot since Yellowstone nearly five years ago.  Distance and light are definitely factors, but they're also excuses.  This shot's not bad, but I'm going to get a better one.

Emu, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
I had no distance problems with the emu, who came right up to the car looking for food.  Had to switch to the wide angle because he was so close, which enabled me to get a crisp shot of his eye reflecting the big Texas sky.

Emu, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
Something about their face gives them a bit of an angry look.  Anthropomorphism at its finest.

Axis Deer, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
This young axis deer was the only one we saw with its antlers in velvet.

Addax, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
I'm used to seeing this resting pose from our dog Ginny.  I didn't expect to see an antelope like this addax in a similar one.

Fallow Deer, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
Two fallow deer were doing a little mock sparring in the shade.  All the animals really seemed to be enjoying the warm weather and bright sun.

Sable Antelope, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
Sable antelope reflected in a watering hole.

Fallow Deer, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
This fallow deer thought the warm afternoon was perfect for not being active.

Wild Turkey, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
If I was a wild turkey, and I knew a place where people just drove around throwing food on the ground all day, you can bet I'd live there, too.

Axis Deer, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
When sunlight streams through sporadic spots in the trees, you understand why patterns like the one on this young axis deer provides helpful camouflage.

Auodad, Fossil Rim Wildlife Center
There just isn't anything else like eyes.  They're known as the windows to the soul for a reason.  And even on animals like the emu earlier or this aoudad, they have a special magic all their own.

Click here for Part II.

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