Where the Antelope Play

During our recent trip to photograph the wild horses of South Dakota (posted a couple of weeks ago), we decided at the end of the trip to make a short excursion to Custer State Park. I had never visited this area, but had heard much about it. After a brief day and a half there, I vowed I would go back! You might remember my post on the Mountain Bluebirds that included photos made in the park. Another subject we looked for was the Pronghorn (Antilocapra americana).

During our first day in the park, we saw several pronghorn, but they were usually at some distance away. We did manage to come upon a trio of does that we watched for a while, noticing that all 3 were very pregnant. With one lying down, we stayed around a while, hoping that we might witness the beginning of a new life:


Pronghorn Antelope


You might have noticed the doe lying down beyond the pronghorn in the last image. This is the one we thought might be about ready to give birth. But as time began flying by, we decided that our limited time in the park would likely be more productive if we kept driving.

As the sun fell low in the western sky, we came upon a small herd (a buck with his harem of does) that were grazing above us on a small knoll. We pulled over and photographed this group until the sun began falling behind the mountains. Here are a couple of our favorite images:


Pronghorn Antelope


Pronghorn Antelope


Moving ahead, to the next morning, we finally did see a young pronghorn with it’s mom:


Pronghorn doe with recently-born young


They didn’t stay around. Once we stopped the car, mom immediately trotted off, with young in tow. Another great experience in Custer State Park!



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