A Rhino’s Tale
Southeastern Ohio isn’t where you’d expect to run into a rhinoceros. Nor is it the place where you’d expect to find a safari, complete with some of the rarest animals in the world. And, yet, this part of Ohio, with its small towns, rolling hills, and rural charm, is home to one of the world’s largest and most impressive wildlife parks – The Wilds.
Established in 1984, The Wilds resides on nearly 10,000 acres of donated land from American Electric Power. Once utilized for surface mining and dotted with hardy shrubs and rough grasses, the land was just beginning its recovery when The Wilds was founded. It was almost impossible to believe that a place that had once been so barren would ever truly recover into something so beautiful. But that’s exactly what happened.
The Wilds not only restored the original beauty of the Appalachian hills, it became a world leader in conservation and animal husbandry. Its location and vast acreage enable endangered species from around the globe to live in free-roaming pastures in natural family groups, behaving much as they do in their native ranges.
Jan Ramer, Vice President at The Wilds said,
“AEP is the reason we’re here.”
With more than 500 animals representing 28 species of some of the world’s rarest animals, over 150 lakes and ponds, and vistas of rolling hills, The Wilds would be an exceptional experience anywhere in the world. The fact that it’s in the Midwestern heart of America makes it incredibly special.
The Wilds truly captures not only the amazing transformative potential of partnerships like the ongoing support from American Electric Power, but showcases perfectly the hope that together we can make the world a better place for people and animals.