On the Ranch
As the end of another year rapidly approaches, it’s a stunning reminder of how quickly time passes. While time is indeed a human construct, it is one that we have taken for granted and assumed to be universal, but of course it is not. What is real and universal (at least to our planet!) is the cycle of day and night, the phases of the moon, the changing aspect of the sun, and of course, the sometimes slight, sometimes sudden change of seasons. All very noticeable here on Tejon Ranch. Also obvious is how the seasons are different now, our climate is changing, rainfall has diminished, and sunny winter days are far more common than they used to be. Needless to say, this impacts both plants and wildlife, as well as all of us. With this in mind, the Conservancy is coordinating research on the Ranch, looking at climate change and how the living environment might adapt, or might not…a potentially sad reality for some species.
Of course, along with shorter days and chilly nights, comes that seemingly endless string of year-end email appeals, and mailboxes filled with letters telling compelling stories about the need for your support, which is all very important. So we’ll join in the chorus of year-end giving and ask that you please consider including the Tejon Ranch Conservancy among your favored causes.
Bob Reid with an English barn owl.
I recently was in England, where falconry is popular, and had an opportunity to get up close and personal with several raptors at a rescue center. It was quite amazing. They are very majestic creatures. While we don’t advocate domestication of wild birds, I gained an even greater appreciation of these noble birds. At Tejon, we have several owl species, including the western burrowing owl. Once abundant from Canada to Mexico, they are now rapidly declining in California due to loss of habitat by farming and development. At the Conservancy, we are working to protect this somewhat quirky little owl through working lands management and protection of critical habitat on Tejon Ranch.
In this issue, we hope you’ll enjoy reading about our newest board member, one profile of a passionate volunteer, a budding young herpetologist, along with some plant news, wildlife camera updates, and a link to sign up for the Christmas Bird Count! And we hope you’ll join us as a member and plan some visits to this incredible place called Tejon Ranch!
From all of us, wishing you and yours a safe and loving holiday filled with family, friends and hope.
See you on the Ranch!
Bob Reid, President & CEO, Tejon Ranch Conservancy