Monday, October 6, 2014

Wild Burro - South Dakota

I've done a previous post on wild burros in Nevada.  They looked quite uniform: white muzzle, underside and around the eyes; gray coat; black stripe down the back and tail, black stripes on the lower legs and a black stripe on the shoulder.

I recently saw two wild burros in Custer State Park, South Dakota, which look much more like mules than the burros I saw in Nevada and are more variable in look and color (this is determined from the two I saw as well as pictures of other burros photographed there). The burros in Custer State Park are feral and descend from pack animals used for treks to Harney Peak years ago. I saw these burros along the Wildlife Loop Road northeast of the Buffalo Corrals. I stopped to view one that looked more like the burros in Nevada, although much larger, with a darker coat, a darker underside and lacking the black stripes. 
Wild burro in Custer State Park.
While I watched this burro another burro from down the road saw me and began to approach.  It was a lighter gray, more the color of the Nevada burros, but larger, with more white on the underside and face and lacking the black stripes. 

The two burros together.
We also saw some earlier at a great distance. I was a little disappointed we did not see more of them to get a better feel of the variability. These burros were also less friendly than those I encountered in Nevada, although we did talk to several people that mentioned feeding them. 

1 comment:

  1. I'm surprised at how different the two burros look. They almost look like two different subspecies