As an occasional hunter, a grandson and nephew of ranchers, and a human who very much enjoys eating meat, I tend to shrug off anti-hunting sentiments. We have more than 60 species free ranging on over 18,000 acres of Texas Hill Country! My shot had, in fact, punctured her stomach. Good to go. That’s a big deal in parts of the state where ranching and farming are in decline. She didn’t miss a beat. Ox’s animals range freely across thousands of acres, he frequently notes, and while many guests prefer to hunt easy prey from roadways, anyone seeking a stiffer challenge can target more elusive “monsters” that haven’t been seen in years, including the reclusive and remarkably well-camouflaged nyala antelope. During that first idyllic afternoon stalking birds in a Hill Country field near Johnson City, a five-hour drive from our homes in the Piney Woods, I killed twice as many doves as anybody else. Hunting was a sport, these men explained. White-tailed bucks are $2,500 to $20,000, based on the size of the antlers. I had heard many hunters talk about the thrill of the hunt, the excitement of the first kill, but also the twinge of remorse that comes from taking the life of a beautiful creature. Hill Country rancher Roy Leslie is a self-described “sworn enemy of exotics and invasives,” or at least those that don’t stay confined to their owners’ private property. And yet ranch management is so confident that it promises a free trip to hunters who don’t get an opportunity to shoot their desired animal, a courtesy that has never had to be offered. Get our weekly newsletter, filled with good reads, news analysis—and updates on special events. There was just one problem. And although novelty and commerce were the industry’s original driving forces, conservation of threatened species has also become an important goal for exotic game breeders and owners as well as many of their clients. (940) 393-5853 jimbob@ninebarranch.com The most common species of exotics in Texas are the axis deer reported to be confined on 463 ranches in 92 counties and free-ranging only in an additional 6 counties. To my pleasant surprise, Texas Monthly would foot the bill. I’m in la-la land while tables are flipping and glass is breaking and dudes are pummeling each other. Nine Bar Ranch is one of the top rated ranches for North Texas deer hunts and North Texas exotic hunts including but not limited to Audad, Blackbuck, Fallow Deer, Red Stag and Sika deer. The species is confined on only 25 counties. “I guarantee it’s a lot more humane to be shot by a bullet than eaten alive by a lion!” Oxley recently wrote on the ranch’s website. Others prefer to navigate a “war zone” obstacle course in the decommissioned military vehicles. But at $3,500, the cost to hunt an axis buck was beyond my means; then again, I had never been a trophy hunter. I had taken the doves in unsportsmanlike fashion. Our Hill Country location features many exotic species. In the warm weather, most of the game animals that Sivells and I saw were languidly standing or sitting beside bales of hay, grain feeders, and watering stations. She had died relatively quickly. Zebras are a common sight at the “We’ve got a lot better options out here,” he said of Ox. A Thomson’s gazelle, native to East Africa. Don't have an account? Its long, white-spotted body was angled away from us, but her head turned back in our direction. I’m in Griffiths’s camp. Ox Ranch is legendary for Whitetail Deer hunting and exotic game hunts. Today, the Ox Ranch offers safaris complete with luxury cabins and gourmet cuisine. In their native habitat, of course, many of these creatures would have been killed by apex predators. “Most of these whitetails that make up the deer porn photographs, I don’t think they can survive on their own,” he said. “There’s no way we can afford to have this ranch and raise these animals if we don’t have the hunting income.”, However, other Texas-based operations, such as the nonprofit Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, in Glen Rose, south of Fort Worth, and the for-profit Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch, north of San Antonio, each home to about fifty animal species, have operated for decades without allowing hunts. With its subtropical, savanna-like terrain, lax regulations, and abundance of private land, Texas has become the epicenter of the exotic game industry in the United States. To India and some neighboring countries, they flushed away and bounded cover... Alpine Ibex, Nubian Ibex, Nubian Ibex, Nubian Ibex, and tour. 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