Monday, July 11, 2005

Yes! Ostrich Bite

Or so the sign says. Actually, it's quite true, as both my older daughter and I can attest to.

We stopped by Rooster Cogburn Ostrich Ranch, the largest ostrich farm in North America that coincidentally happens to be on the all-too-familiar route between Tucson, where we live, and Phoenix, where Ikea lives.

Below: There's now an addage in the Buntin household: "You don't have to be smarter than an ostrich, but you certainly have to be faster!"

YES! Ostrich bite.

Below: Here my older daughter and I try our hand at feeding the aggressive ganders. I was actually able to pet their heads, but only with the promise of food, a combo of some kind of compressed Chow pellet and corn. The trick, you see, is to put three pieces of the food in your hand, hold it straight out so your finger tips touch the wooden rail, so the ostrich necks need to bend way over. Their beaky aim is terrible, their force uncontrolled. Yes, we still have all our fingers, but perhaps just barely...!

Daddy and daughter on the ostrich-feeding platform.

Below: Here's daddy and my younger daughter with the Key deer, which are much softer and friendlier. They'll gladly feed right out of your hand.

Daddy and daughter feeding Key deer.

Below: Hard to look one of these fellas straight in the eye and say, "Howdy, pardner!" But that's just what we did, and lived to tell the tale!

Well howdy, pardner!

Oh yeah, it was also 108 degrees at noon when we visited. Good golly, bring on the rains! Gina, didn't you quite nearly guarantee those by now?!



gina said...

Oh! I know this place. Guess that settles the plural for ostrich. I always want to add the "es" at the end. They're so cool.

No rain. I was wrong. But we have our first overcast day today...

Simmons B. Buntin said...

I think that's smoke from the Florida fire in the Santa Ritas... Actually, though, I hear it did rain down in Vail this afternoon.