Caprock Partners Foundation’s mission is to protect and raise awareness of the official Texas State Bison Herd located at Caprock Canyons State Park along the eastern escarpment of the Llano Estacado in Briscoe County, Texas. The Texas State Bison Herd likely originated from orphaned bison calves rescued in 1878 by Charles and Molly Goodnight, early conservation advocates who were opposed to “the great slaughter” which nearly drove bison to extinction the 19th century. Against all odds, the herd managed to survive for decades. The Texas State Bison Herd represents the last remnants of the genetically-distinct Southern Plains subspecies, making this unique population of more than 200 individuals a great conservation and cultural value.
A book is in development to showcase the herd by displaying their history, maintenance and conservation efforts, community involvement and promotion, and how the bison have impacted the surrounding community. The book will also provide information about future planning for the herd in ensuring conservation.
Project Description & History
Written and photographed by Carol Hutchison, the Texas State Bison Herd coffee table book is intended to bring awareness on the importance of habitat and bison conservation in the Southern Plains of Texas. The book will touch on the history of the herd, tell the story of how the herd has grown since it was donated to the park by the JA Ranch, and how the community of Quitaque rallies around them to help care for them. Caprock Partners Foundation is currently producing a short documentary about the Texas State Bison herd. The vision for the coffee table book is to be a companion to the documentary. All profit from sales of the book will directly benefit the Herd. Production began in early 2019, with capturing the methods used to care for the herd. Images and text are intended to reveal the dedication of the park personnel and biologists to maintain and ensure the health of each animal. This project is important because it will document and celebrate the official Texas State Bison Herd, which are southern plains bison once at the brink of extinction. Readers will view bison in their element through the many beautiful images throughout the book, with text delivering the message of continued conservation of these powerful animals. Many Texans are unaware the Herd exists. CFP would like to bring awareness of the Herd and how the Herd has brought more visitors to the Park since they were donated and moved there in 1997.
This book hopes to impact the local community by encouraging the public to visit Caprock Canyons State Park to view the Bison Herd. Increased park attendance positively impacts the local community by creating opportunities for business growth in the form of lodging, restaurants and retail stores. Caprock Partners Foundation believes that the 110,000 people who visit Caprock Canyons State Park annually will be positively impacted along with the park staff, and the citizens of Quitaque, Texas by the continued restoration of the Herd.