2014 News – New Pool for the Water Buffalo

In October, a pool was created for the buffalo at Grace Children’s Home. They are water buffalo, so they obviously love the water; in fact it is essential to keep them cool. Until the pool was created, the ‘Buffalo Man’ had to hose them down them each day.

In the wild, water buffalo spend much of their day submerged in the muddy waters of Asia’s tropical and subtropical forests. This way the animal is able to keep its body temperature stable and prevent overheating in the high temperatures. Their wide-splayed hoofed feet prevent them from sinking too deeply in the mud and allow them to move about in wetlands and swamps. These marshes provide good cover and rich aquatic plants to forage on, although water buffalo actually prefer to feed in grasslands on grass and herbs. The water buffalo is used as a transportation system for transfer of heavy loads and people. Because of that, it is also known as "tractor of the East".

They can run very fast when faced with danger, with an average speed of 30 miles per hour. Their milk, which the children in GCH drink, contains the greatest percent of fats compared to other species of wild cow. This is the reason why young water buffalos grow up quite quickly. The young are tightly associated with their mothers in the first few years of their life. They can survive up to nine years in the wild and up to 25 years in captivity.

Wild water buffalo are endangered and live only in a small number of protected areas stretching across India, Nepal, and Bhutan, and a wildlife reserve in Thailand. And populations are likely to diminish as they are interbred with domesticated water buffalo.

It was a great day when the Grace Children’s Home water buffalo were able to plunge into their own pool. In addition to the Buffalo Pool, another smaller pool was created, and as the photos show, both pools look very picturesque.