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Train conductor thinks he’s solved Downtown Corpus Christi javelina mystery

Posted at 1:05 AM, Feb 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-16 02:06:28-05
Two javelinas were capture near KRIS-TV. (KRIS file photo)


It could be mystery solved in the peculiar case of javelinas showing up in Downtown Corpus Christi.

“In my opinion, this is where they’re coming from, and that is where they’re going,” Union Pacific train conductor Daniel Jones said.

The place he believes they’re coming from is the Flint Hills Wildlife Learning Preserve that runs along the Corpus Christi Ship Channel where Jones drives his train every day.

He says he often sees wildlife, including javelinas, on that corridor from the preserve to the cusp of downtown.

“They aren’t usually on the tracks,” Jones said. “They stay in the grassy part near the side where their food source is, and they’ll follow it all the way downtown just looking for something to eat.”

Texas Parks and Wildlife Game Warden Ben Baker thinks Jones’s theory holds a lot of water, but he says there are other possible explanations for the mysterious appearances in such an urban area.

“We discussed them following the train tracks in and coming in from the port area,” Cpt. Baker said. “It could just be family-unit curiosity. It could be seeking out new food sources. It could be the recent rains.”

While that remains a mystery, Baker is more confident about something else related to the two Downtown Corpus Christi javelina visits.

You may remember a group of three of the animals was spotted Jan. 31 at the corner of Chaparral and Peoples streets. Then on Feb. 6 three javelinas showed up near the KRIS-TV studios.

Javelinas were wandering Monday morning in the KRIS/KZTV studio areas. (Photo: Mike Gillaspia)


“The original group of three that was captured and released were released a little too close to the city limits, and so those three just happened to migrate back to where they caught them originally,” Baker said.

So, there was only one trio of downtown-visiting javelina, but if you believe Jones’s theory of where they’re coming from and how they get downtown, there could very well be more of them.

“Animals travel all the time, and with all the industrial area around us, they’re starting to move in,” Jones said. “It just happens. We push them out, and they come to us.”