Wichita Mts Wildlife Refuge - 11 JUL 2010

Located next to Fort Sill, this 59,020 acre Refuge hosts large native grazing animals such as the American Bison, Rock Mountain Elk, White-tailed Deer and Texas Longhorn Cattle. Caught this mailbox fish on the way to the Refuge:
As part of a wildlife reintroduction program, 15 bison were brought here in 1907 from the New York Bronx Zoo. The herd is maintained at 650 by yearly auctions.
The Texas Longhorn is considered a significant cultural and historical resource. A 6 year old steer can have horns over five feet, tip-to-tip. Other animals that have been reintroduced to this area include: prairie dogs, river otters and burrowing owls.
All the local elk were killed off so the Rocky Mountain elk were used for reintroduction. A controlled hunting program keeps the herd at 800 elk and the deer around 450.
Prairie dogs are considered a keystone species. This means they affect many other organisms in an ecosystem and help to determine the types and numbers of various other species in a community. I thought this little guy was so cute eating a crust of bread until I read the sign that said not to feed them, people food as it can make their hair fall out. Since they don't drink water, salt is not good for them.
We also visited the Museum of the Great Plains. TW rides the horns. Tinky Winky found a large reading buddy:They have a recreation of a trading fort build to exact scale. Can you find TW in this photo?
They also have a nice lily pond.Driving around town (Lawton) we found this sculpture in front of an AT&T store. It's titled: Wireless