Kiwanis of Lufkin, TX
Project No. 8 - Deer Habitat - 1997
White Tailed Deer
The only deer native to this area can be identified by its white "flag"- the white underside of its tail that flashes clearly when the animal is disturbed. White-tailed deer associate in small groups, the males and females usually separate except in the breeding season. "Orphaned fawns are normally not orphaned at all, but are thought to be so because the doe will usually remain hidden until the intruder leaves. There is little truth to the rumor that does will abandon fawn handled by man because of human scent.
The domestic turkey that we associate with Thanksgiving, was a native bird to a large part of the eastern half of the United States. Habitat destruction and unregulated hunting resulted in elimination of this bird through most of its former range.
The wild turkey has been gone from the forests of East Texas, but are now being reintroduced through a special co-operative program. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, The National Wild Turkey Federation, The United States Forest Service, private timber companies, and land owners have joined together to provide habitat for over 4,000 turkeys.
Sandhill cranes are one of two species if cranes that inhabit the United States. They occur in large flocks and can be found over two-thirds of Texas during the fall and winter months. Small animals, insects, berries and green shoots comprise the diet of these birds. Sandhill cranes look like "gray whooping cranes" except they are smaller and don't often feed in the salt marshes occupied by the endangered, larger, white whooping crane. When sandhill cranes take to the air, they fly with their neck extended and are very graceful.
The club built, under the guidance and help of zoo personnel, a 50' by 70' exhibit enclosed by wire fencing and containing a pen for the deer. This exhibit is located between the owl cage on the right and the Galapagos tortoise exhibit on the right. (The tortoise exhibit is now being moved)
Holes were dug for eight-foot posts which were then put in place. Behling wire fencing was then nailed to the posts to form an enclosure for the deer. A wooden pen was constructed at the rear of the exhibit. Decorative fencing was constructed from the corner of the turtle exhibit to the owl exhibit, part of this between the deer and owl exhibits being rope fencing. A viewing walkway was constructed in front of the deer exhibit with an island between the main walkway and the viewing walkway. The island and the area in front of the exhibit were planted with various types of plants and shrubs. All in all it is a beautiful exhibit.
The finished exhibit
The project was completed with 23 Kiwanians working 196 man-hours. It was impossible to get members to work Sunday afternoons so it was planned to eliminate any work on Sunday in the future.
A check for $2800.00 was presented by President Kim Wilcox to Mayor Bronaugh and Gordon Henley, Zoo Director on June 27, 1997. Numerous Kiwanians and a newspaper reporter were present for the dedication.
Last updated 3/19/2000
Page by F. Jacobs
and F. Preston