Caged Animals and the Texas Department of Wildlife

Most people could think of no connection between the Texas Department of Wildlife and the sick children at the Texas Medical Center. In the minds of someone who writes for children, however, such a connection can not be denied. The following article uncovers the basis for that connection, and it emphasizes the benefits of that unusual and almost unrecognized connection.

Because Texas is an extremely large state, the Texas Department of Wildlife must watch over an immense area. This short article can not do justice to the Department's supervision of the entire state.  Therefore the following passages discuss the Department's watch over one small section of the Lone Star State.

In the late 1940's, the Texas Department of Wildlife watched carefully over the open fields that lay just outside of Houston, Texas. The Department kept an eye on those lands, because at that time many rabbits made their home in the area's tall grass. Many Texas hunters looked for rabbits in that open area.

At that time, more than fifty years ago, officials from the Texas Department of Wildlife saw but the barest indications that civilization had begun to spread into that open and grassy area. At that time, only a single structure-the Prudential Building-rose above the vast expanse of land that circled a growing Houston.

The open lands then outside of Houston were not far from one particular section of land, a section that had become familiar to employees of Texas park and wildlife organizations. The open land where Texans hunted rabbits was located just beyond the section of land occupied by Hermann Park. Inside of that Park one could find caged wildlife. Inside of that Park was the Houston Zoo.

Of course the animals in the zoo knew nothing about the Texas Department of Wildlife. They did not realize that each cage at the Houston Zoo housed a representative from an untamed region of the world.  The animals could not understand how their confinement posed a challenge to officials from the Texas Department of Wildlife.

The animals did not know that Texas' park and wildlife regulations allowed a working train inside a park. The animals only knew that there was such a train in Hermann Park.  Many of the animals could see the train chugging through the Park every single day. They heard the engineer blow the whistle, and they smelled the riders on those train cars.

Now there is no way to discover what the animals thought about that Hermann Park train. Still, it is fun to consider what thoughts might have entered the minds of the Zoo animals. Perhaps those animals wondered why the Texas Department of Wildlife confined the animals and allowed such freedom to the humans.

Such musings might seem a bit absurd, but they could form the seeds of an idea for a children's story. A young child would undoubtedly enjoy a story about the zoo animals. A young child might find escape from a majority of his or her cares in such a fictional story

Such a story could prove useful to educators at the Texas Medical Center in Houston. Such a story might help the educators to add interest to the materials given to children at the Center's hospitals. In that way the Texas Department of Wildlife would not only protect the wild animals, it would also expand the thinking of the children at the Texas Medical Center.

Maybe money from the sale of such a book could be used to fund more of the services provided by the Texas Department of Wildlife.

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