Santa Clarita Valley History In Pictures

Hart Buffalo Herd Grows.



    There has been a population explosion at William S. Hart County Park in Newhall.
    Where a short time ago there were eight American plains buffalo roaming a new range within the park as a gift from Walt Disney, now there are 10.
    "Looks like Walt put one over on us," Supervisor Warren M. Dorn said when advised of the sudden increase. "We didn't know two of the seven cows had motherhood planned."
    But Disney, too, denies knowing of the impending births, and insists he gave away more than he knew he had.
    It has been suggested that Dorn and Disney be named godfathers to the babies.
    Scott Thomas, superintendent of the park, reported today:
    "Mothers and children are all doing fine. We might come up with a sizable herd of buffalo yet."
    He added that the papa buffalo, the only bull in the herd, is acting proudly, but has not yet passed out any cigars.
    The half ton animals, formerly used in Disney films, were brought from Disney Golden Oak ranch by the producer himself on April 16, and presented to the County through Supervisor Dorn.


Supervisor Warren M. Dorn
869 Hall of Administration
Los Angeles 12
(Dave Swaim — MA 5-3611, Ext. 65468)



    Bulletin new lead, Buffalo story (se page 5).
    Since this newsletter went to press the buffalo population of William S. Hart County Park in Newhall has increased one more.
    Supervisor Warren M. Dorn received a frantic phone call from Park Superintendent Scott Thomas reporting the birth of the third baby buffalo in the new bison compound this morning.
    This brings the herd total now to 11.
    A month ago Producer Walt Disney donated seven buffalo cows and one questionable bull to the County park.
    "This shows what County care can do in the way of unexpected dividends," Supervisor Dorn said upon receipt of the news.

August 8, 1963

Mr. Clyde A. Hill
Assistant Curator of Mammals
San Diego Zoological Garden
P.O. Box 551
San Diego, California

Dear Mr. Hill:

The bison herd at the William S. Hart Park, Newhall Calif. has a total of fifteen (15) animals. Seven cows and one bull were donated to the County of Los Angeles by Walt Disney in April of 1962. Since that time, four calves were born in the spring of 1962, and three, in the spring of 1963.

Mr. Disney obtained these animals from the Diamond Bar Ranch, Pomona California, about seven years ago. His ranch foreman, Mr. Sam Hurt, was unable to furnish the information requested as to their origin.

As to the other animals exhibited at William S. Hart Park, we have limited our display to farm animals and barnyard fowl.

If we can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to call on us.

Very truly yours,

N.S. Johnson, Director



To Jim Child    From Lloyd P. Hiatt    Date May 25, 1966

Subject Buffalo

    Would like to recommend that the original donation of 7 heifer and their four new born calves, and 1 Bull (Clyde), that were donated by Mr. Walt Disney, remain at the Hart Ranch.
    This gives an added attraction as well as prestige and recognition to our Parks and Recreation Dept. We have children as well as adults that drive several hundred miles, and from many States, who come just to see the Buffalo calf as well as the grown ones.
    I would like to further recommend we save (2) two of the better grown heifers to keep our herd replenished for the future. The bull is now 7 and the original heifers are between 13-15. The average age for Buffalo is 18 to 20, however for reproduction ends about 15. At present we cannot expect many of our Cow's [sic] to remain with us many more years. At this point it is necessary that we select the best heifers as we go along, to be able to replace our older cow's. This would put our herd at about 14 Buffalo, which we could handle very nicely.
    Also, received a copy of a letter from Dr. Young at Griffith Park, to Mr. Norman S. Johnson, asking that three (3) of our Buffalo be donated to the new Zoo. This would be an ideal place to have them on view to the public.

William S. Hart Park
[May] 25, 1966

To: Jim Child
From: Lloyd P. Hiatt
Subject: Buffalo

Year Born Date Time Years Male Female Approx. Weight Total

? ? ? (12-15) 7 1,000 Ea. 7
1959 ? ? 7 1 2,000 8
(These were donated By Mr. Walter Disney — Monday April 16, 1962 to
William S. Hart Park) Male is Clyde* (Walt's real name)

1962 (1) May 4 ? 4 Yrs. 9
    (2) May 8 ? M-800-850 10
    (3) May 11 ? 4 1 F-700-750 11
    (4) May 27 ? 12
    (5) May 28 ? 13
(Sold 2 Bulls — 2 yr. old in 1964 to Verda Cattle Co. for $275.00)
Plus — 1 Bull — 1 Yr. old of 1963 herd)
***For this year this left 2 Bulls and 1 Heifer***

1963 (1) May 11 ? 3 Yrs. 14
    (2) May 25 ? 1 2 M-550-600 15
    (3) May 28 ? F-550-600 16
*Note above 1 Bull sold* (In 1964)

1964 (1) April 28 ? 1 17
    (2) May 10 (During Eve. Of May 9th(?) ? M-450 18
    (3) [illegible] M-500 19
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