Javelinas - Dina Lea Klotz
Prior to this experience, I had minimal knowledge of wild hogs/pigs. Early in 2015, I learned that Feral Hogs can seriously injure a human or kill them. Especially when babies are around, the risk of the Feral Hogs becoming dangerously aggressive is very high. Well ... in March, 2015, while in the San Angelo area visiting Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue, I decided to also visit San Angelo State Park. When I drove up to the entrance, I asked about any highlights at the park. The Staff informed me of a sweet bird blind that attracts numerous varieties. In addition, the Staff mentioned that Javelinas have been seen. (Javelinas are big pigs and you don't want to approach them, just like Feral Hogs). I arrived at the sweet bird blind and entered. It's a cute little building with "house" windows. The windows are raised and then a hinge locks them open. There were three of these windows that I opened. So many variety of birds ... some I could identify and some I couldn't. I was pleasantly comforted and was enjoying my time photographing what I could. Suddenly, I noticed something big and gray behind the little watering pond. The big and gray subject was a Javelina. Well, the immediate information that came to my mind was they are dangerous, will chase humans (especially if babies are around), and can attack with intent to severely harm or kill. I saw one Javelina and thought to myself "oh it's alright, it's just one." So, I took a few photos of that "one" and then continued with my bird photography. Moments later, I noticed that Javelina walked away and was no longer in my view. I thought, "ahhh, that was interesting to see." Here's the exciting part: Suddenly, I see that "one" Javelina return, then immediately following her were two more, then about a handful more, then a few more. Babies were among this family. Well, at this point, I think I started hyperventilating. I didn't know what to do. I knew as long as I was in the bird blind house, I was safe. But the sun was going down so I couldn't stay in there overnight (or could I??). No phone signal so I couldn’t call the Staff to come pick me up in their little Cart. So I closed the windows as quietly as I could. I went out the front door as quietly as I could ... THEN, I ran like H... back to my car, all along the way looking back to make sure nothing was chasing me. They weren't! The entire time I was running, I literally was thinking, "I've got to start working out!!!" When I got to my car, I think I almost teared up from fear, excitement, relief, etc. I was shaking and sat in my car to get myself together. My doors were closed AND locked - lol. On my way out, I stopped at the Staff office and shared my experience. They were sure it was a family of Javelinas and not Feral Hogs. March 27, 2015