Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch Transports You to Africa

IMG_2391 The San Antonio Convention and Visitor’s Bureau invited my family to spend an afternoon visiting the “Africa in the middle of Texas Hill Country,” which is called Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch. Opened on June 1, 1984 Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch is the longest running safari park in Texas. However, at one time the ranch yielded only cattle and goat. These days it’s designated as a Texas Land Heritage Property and has been in the same family who have been operating the ranch for over 100 years. The sixth generation of the family continues to live and work on the ranch these days.

There are 400 acres to explore however, so there was a lot more to be found in the ranch’s four compounds; the Massai Savannah, Kenyan Preserve, Kilamanjaro Overlook and the Tatonka Range. The actual drive through is four miles in length and takes about an hour to complete and each vehicle that enters the park is provided with a container of feed.

Like most visitors I was able to feed the animals from my vehicle and yes, the animals will come right up to the vehicle to grab a tasty morsel.
IMG_2423You will find ostriches, which I have a childhood memory of my grandmother getting bitten by one at this ranch. That being said, they are aggressive, so if they approach you, I highly suggest you throw out their food. There are also zebra and reticulated giraffes, which are my daughters favorite animal next to a pig.
IMG_2456 There are a plethora of deer from the African plains including kudo and waterbuck, southern North American Buffalo and wildebeest. In fact, there are more than 500 animals of 40 exotic, native and endangered species living at the ranch.

Many endangered species find Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch a safe home-away-from-home and two highly-successful breeding programs for the Scimitar Horned Oryx and Addax have enabled these animals to survive at the ranch much more successfully than they could in the wild.
IMG_2459For more pictures from my trip to the wildlife ranch, check out my Google+ album here.

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