They are totally NOT native to the areas they live in but they are lovin' life there.

The El Paso Zoo is loaded with animals that don't come from El Paso. Duh, it's a zoo. The animals are there on purpose so we can look at and learn about them.

Some animals are roaming the southwest though for reasons other than just to be seen by kids and animal lovers.

Some animals that are quite common to the Southwest aren't ... or, at least, weren't originally ... native to the area. Horses, for example, were brought to North America by the Spanish in the 1400's.

Since then, they settled right in and are everywhere today. Wild horses still roam all over the place as well.

Here are some animals that live around us but don't really belong here:

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Ostrich in Arizona. They aren't out in the wild but live on an actual ostrich ranch where they are raised and cultivated for their eggs, hides and meat.

Similar to a cattle ranch but the ostrich are much faster and, apparently, way dumber.

Other, non-native critters in Arizona include crayfish, bullfrogs and red ear turtles. They also have freakin' jaguars there.

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Alligators in El Paso. From the late 1800's to the mid '70's, there were alligators in San Jacinto Plaza.

While they are native to the coastal areas of Texas, they're damn sure not desert dwellers.

Other invaders throughout Texas are Red Fire Ants, Feral Hogs and Africanized bees

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Oryx in New Mexico. Native to the Kalahari Desert, they were released near White Sands Missile Range between '69 and '77.

They love it here and now organized hunts are arranged to control the population.

Feral Hogs, Persian Ibex and Barbary Sheep also crashed the 575.

Krazy Arrow Ranchette in Chaparral, NM.

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