At The Wilds   6 comments

Zebra on the Hill
The Wilds is a fourteen square mile zoological park in Central Ohio. For about fourty years, this land was strip mined for its coal. Once complete, the American Electric Company donated the land so that a conservation site could be established.

It is a very large place. A variety of tours are offered–we took an open-air bus, similar to the one pictured above. The tour takes about two-and-a-half hours, with two stops.

Wide View of the Prarie

One of the first new-to-me animals was the Persian Onager. They are donkey-like creatures native to Iran and Iraq. This one seems to think I owe him money or something.
Persian Onager, Looking Annoyed

They foal in August. This one was born either the night before or the day we were there.
Persian Onager Family

This one the day before we visited.
Persian Onager and Foal

And this one was a bit early–a few weeks old.
Persian Onager Foal

A similar animal was Przewalski’s Wild Horse, native to Asia. These have the most impressive manes.
The Mane Thing

They, too, had babies.
Baby Przewalski’s Wild Horse

Foaling Around

Three different subspecies of giraffe were represented. There was the Reticulated Giraffe.
Reticulated Giraffe

The Rothschild Giraffe.
Rothschild Giraffe

And my personal favorite, the Masi Giraffe
Masi Giraffe

Though I’ve seen plenty of emu, I don’t think I’ve seen ostriches that often in person.
Who Are You Calling Birdbrain?

Who are you calling birdbrain?

I feel the need to pull out a bar code scanner…
Lone Zebra

The Wilds is dedicated to conservation. Our guide told us of efforts to save ospreys and butterflies, all very successful. Currently, there is a study with bees.
Bee Experiment
You can sort of see a bee near the second hold from the right, bottom row (green and white box).

There were many species of antelope, including the fringe-eared oryx.
Fringe-Eared Oryx

The banteng is a wild cow, native to China. The Wilds has one of the few pure herds in the world–they have been mostly cross-bred with more domesticated subspecies.

Rhinos use a common latrine, which is also a marking technique. We drove by one.
Rhino Poo

Which led to their herd of Southern white rhinos.
Southern White Rhino

They had a baby rhino, which was cute…for a rhino.
Baby Rhino!

One of the stops was the Mid-Sized Carnivore Conservation Center, which was more appropriately the Mid-Sized Carnivore Lounge Center, as these African wild dogs demonstrate.
Painted Dog Day Afternoon

The Dhole is a dog-like Asian animal that I had never heard of before. It preys on bantengs, and has a very bush tail.
Bushy Dhole Tail

Happy Dhole

Of course there were cats! Specifically cheetahs. In one enclosure was a mom and two eight-month-old cubs.
Dozing Cheetah Family

Mom enjoyed rolling on her back.
Silly Cheetah Family

The cubs demonstrated camouflage. See them?
Cheetah Cub Camouflage

How ’bout now?
Lazy Cheetah Afternoon

In the next enclosure was Steve, a handsome, two-year-old cheetah.
‘Sup, ladies?

All-in-all, we had a great time. It is an amazing facility which is committed to conservation, both through action and education.
The Barilleauxs at The Wilds


6 responses to “At The Wilds

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  1. Beautiful pictures!! Thank you for sharing! I actually had no idea rhinos use a common latrine area… that is fascinating.

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  6. Ok, I see the giraffes’ spot shapes, now! Really interesting! I have never heard of The Wilds, but two of my three kids live in Ohio! We are going to have to visit!
    Great pics! Thanks!

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