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Amid Fires, Santa Rosa Wildlife Preserve Welcomes New Addition

SANTA ROSA (CBS SF) -- While the staff at Safari West has been busy trying to keep the animals kept at the Santa Rosa wildlife preserve safe during the past week of wildfires, the preserve also welcomed a new addition.

Safari West sent out a press release Monday afternoon announcing that, even as the wildfires continue to burn in the North Bay, the preserve was celebrating the arrival of a new member to the Safari West family.

A new Nile lechwe that the staff has christened Tubbs after the fire that roared through Santa Rosa was born during the past week. An aquatic antelope found only in a small area of eastern Africa, Nile lechwe are an endangered species.

A photo shared by Safari West showed that the newborn Tubbs is healthy and strong and already interacting with the other creatures at the preserve.

Safari West Nile lechwe Tubbs
Tubbs, the newborn Nile lechwe born at Safari West during the Wine Country wildfires (Photo Will Bucquoy/Safari West)

"It is easy to focus on the darkness in times of trouble but hopefully, stories like ours of a baby born in the midst of disaster, will remind us to see the light," the press release read.

According to posts on the Safari West website, the preserve's property has been largely undamaged. Throughout the past week, staff members battled spot fires and tended to the animals in an effort to keep them safe, even as some Safari West staff members were evacuated with their homes at risk.

The release also noted that repairs at the preserve were underway and Safari West would reopen to guests as soon as possible. As of Oct. 16, all safari tours and other activities were cancelled through November 12 until further notice. The preserve has also cancelled all overnight lodging until March 1, 2018, due to the wildfires.

More information is available at the Safari West website.

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