Latest Project Updates

16-year-old Maggie hoped to gain confidence from her week-long online exploration of conservation science through a feminine perspective with ACR's Conservation Science Intensive (CSI). She emerged with a new community of mentors and peers, and a sense of hopefulness that “there is no need to stress about it because there are so many ways to gain a career…there is really hope in our generation for the future.”
 
Beginning in the fifth grade, Lucas joined Audubon Canyon Ranch’s Juniper Junior Naturalist program, which welcomes and encourages young learners who are curious about nature and conservation science. As a Juniper, Lucas participated in habitat stewardship, helped guide nature walks and conduct newt counts, and served as a mentor to the younger Junipers.
 
More than 70 entries for the Third Annual Last House Writing Contest were received from writers around the globe. The winning essays focused on themes of renewal, reemergence, rebirth. The grand prize essay, “Heartfelt,” was written by nine-year-old Boston resident Annika (Ani) Thakarar.
 
The grassland site targeted for prescribed fire treatment at Modini Preserve is most threatened by medusahead grass. Burning medusahead in late spring—when mature seeds are still retained in seed heads—is an effective treatment method. This method has the benefit of killing seeds and removing thatch which should benefit the native, fire-adapted species (Kyser et al., 2014).
 
After a two-year break, ACR hosted Bird Day again, which is a special visit to the W. 9th Street heronry in Santa Rosa for the students of Lincoln Elementary School. The heronry on W. 9th Street is home to four species of herons and has over 200 nests, making it an important habitat—especially during nesting season.
 
The four-year grant received from CAL FIRE will launch a workforce development program, the Fire Forward Intensive, which will train five new full-time prescribed burn leaders each year. “We are thrilled to be able to offer additional pathways to professional fire and forest stewardship careers in communities threatened by the impacts of climate change and century-long lack of stewardship,” said program director Sasha Berleman.
 

—Connecting nature, people and science in a rapidly changing world—

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