These lovely and friendly wild (sort of, anyway) burros or donkeys and the tiny Prairie Dogs were spotted last month at the beautiful Custer State Park in South Dakota near Mount Rushmore. These are the last of my series of photographs from my visit to the park this Summer.
I spotted the animals along the side of the road and in a great big pasture on the Wildlife Loop road. The burro’s come to the roadway to beg (successfully) for carrots or apples from the park’s visitors. They seem very tame but one must remember they are still wild animals! So neat to also see many Prairie Dogs chirping their warning when we walked a short way into the fields. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of each picture. Enjoy!
I saw Pronghorn at the lovely Custer State Park near Mount Rushmore in South Dakota in late June, 2017. The big deer-like animals are sometimes referred to as American Antelope or Antelope.
This herd of Pronghorn freely roam the huge pasture-lands of this state park but are mostly away from the bison. They sometimes run near fences which is shown on one of these photographs. The big grasslands are fenced because the bison are occasionally kept in that area in rotation.
Pronghorn eat grasses. There are plenty of grasses for them now. These are grazing animals. In my experience, the Pronghorn are pretty wary of people and are most often away from roads. I was glad to have my zoom lens! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the photograph. Enjoy!
I have just returned from a family vacation to South Dakota. A highlight of the adventure was a visit to the ever-so-lovely Custer State Park in the Mount Rushmore area of the state.
This state park is chock-full of large wild animals. Yes, the enormous pastures where the buffalo (American Bison) roam are fenced but the animals really do run freely in the grasslands. A road for tourists to drive through the area is the best way to see the bison, pronghorn, deer, prairie dogs, and the friendly wild donkeys that call the park home.
I have been to this park three times now and enjoy it quite a lot! I want to wish everyone a happy Independence Day tomorrow (July 4th). Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of each picture. Enjoy!
Little Blue Heron
I visited the very lovely Ocklockonee River State Park a few weeks ago and spent a wonderful night camping there. I was thrilled to see three White Tailed Deer, an Osprey, a Little Blue Heron, a Red-headed Woodpecker, several Boat-tailed Grackles, a pair of Mourning Doves, a couple of Brown Thrashers, and a gorgeous little White Squirrel (sorry no photo).
I took these pictures several times in the morning and it was very cloudy and misty out in my early shots that morning. I am including a couple of shots of just scenery so you can get a sense of the view at this beautiful Florida State Park. The river is a short walk from the campground area.
This state park is quite close to the St. Mark’s National Wildlife Sanctuary and is probably about twenty-five miles to the Gulf of Mexico. I enjoyed the park and would return someday for a longer stay. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture. Enjoy!
White-tailed Deer at a vernal pool
Larry The Alligator is a huge old American Alligator that apparently has lived in this pond for most if not all of its life. Larry The Alligator lives in The Villages, Florida in his pond near the Paddock Square in the Brownsville area of The Villages. The pond is a few blocks from the commercial area and is about a block from parking lots. The pond area is fairly large and has a fence with the sign seen below. I took the pictures a few days ago.
As you also can see from one of the photographs, the alligator caused a traffic jam of golf carts! A major event was winding down on the square which is one of the reasons why there also were a lot of folks on the cart path there. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
Mature White Pelican
White Pelicans, an American Alligator, Egyptian Geese, Sea Gulls, and a lot of Double Crested Cormorants all were spotted here in The Villages, Florida on the lovely little lake behind Freedom Pointe off of El Camino yesterday at Noon. Don’t worry, that ‘Gator seemed to be a smaller one! The alligators often can be seen here in the lakes and larger ponds. The pelicans and cormorants are migratory visitors to the area but the geese, egret and ibises are year-around residents. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
White Pelicans and Double Crested Cormorants
Cormorants and Pelicans
Belted Kingfisher on the Suwanee River
Double Crested Cormorants on the Suwanee River
This lovely Florida State Park has a 72 degree F fresh water spring, is on the banks of the Suwanee River, has a wonderful campground, and walking trails with a children’s playground area. I saw many deer, nine, I think. I also saw four armadillos. There were a few wading birds, and songbirds, but there were perhaps a hundred Turkey Vultures (with a few Black Vultures in the bunch).
Almost every large tree on the Suwanee River at the mouth of the Manatee Springs stream, had many vultures perched on it! It is an amazing sight to see a seventy foot tall Cypress tree festooned with buzzards (another name for vultures).
This park is not a zoo and all the animals are wild. I was surprised to see the animals so boldly walking around were people were.
I recommend visiting Manatee Springs State Park. A lovely place with a lot to see in a small park. It is about six miles from the small town of Chiefland where there are several stores and restaurants. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger picture. Enjoy!
Probably an Eastern Phoebe
Pied-billed Grebe on the Suwanee River
Juvenile Little Blue Heron at the Manatee Spring