Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Explore: King-Swett Ranches

The King-Swett Ranches are a hidden treasure yet to be discovered by most Bay Area residents. This nearly 4,000-acre expanse of land straddles the southwestern corner of Solano County. Views from atop King Ranch sweep across the Suisun Marsh all the way to the Sierras, with Mount Diablo rising to the south. On the western edge of Vallejo-Swett Ranch, views include the Golden Gate Bridge and Mount Tamalpais, the San Francisco and San Pablo Bays, and the Napa River and marshes.

The steep hilly grasslands, oak woodlands, and riparian corridors provide habitat for a wide variety of species, including many that are rare and endangered. Johnny-jump-ups provide habitat for rare butterflies. Several ponds provide prime habitat for the endangered California red-legged frog. Slivers of serpentine soils support native grasses such as purple needlegrass, blue wild rye, and numerous wildflowers. The hills are a raptor’s paradise where golden eagles, Northern harriers, burrowing owls, and Swainson’s, Cooper’s and red-tailed hawks scan the open grasslands for food. Birders will delight in spotting Northern orioles, towhees, Western bluebirds, Swainson’s thrushes, Western kingbirds, black phoebes, tree swallows, and western meadowlarks. Mammals include black-tailed deer, coyotes and ground squirrels.

With an abundance of sensitive and endangered species, these lands serve as an important nature preserve.

PG&E purchased the ranches in 1980 as a potential windmill site and continues to be involved with restoration activities. When Solano Land Trust purchased the Vallejo Swett Ranch in 2005, it completed a three-parcel purchase—with Eastern Swett and King Ranches—from PG&E that began in 2001. This acquisition by Solano Land Trust was the realization of a plan begun in 1992 by a coalition formed to preserve 10,000 acres of land as a buffer zone between the cities of Benicia, Fairfield, and Vallejo. The purchase of the properties was made possible with generous grants from the Coastal Conservancy, the Wildlife Conservation Board, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the three cities, and the County of Solano. Solano Land Trust's resource management plan protects natural, agricultural and cultural resources, maintains cattle grazing, and invites the community on docent-led hikes.

The properties—also referred to as Sky Valley-Cordelia Hills Open Space—are located between Interstates 680 and 80 near Fairfield (to the northeast), Benicia (to the south) and Vallejo (to the west).

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Baby Gull Release International Bird Rescue's LA Center

Baby Gulls being released back into the wild on September 8th, 2016. The video was taken by Katrina Plummer.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Lynch Canyon Open Space Park - Aerial Video

Flying above lynch canyon open space park. Over highway 80.
Part of bay area ridge trail.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Bringing Back A Butterfly

For the first time in nearly a decade, Dakota skippers are back at The Nature Conservancy’s Hole-in-the-Mountain Prairie preserve in Minnesota. In the first-ever reintroduction of this federally-threatened species, the Minnesota Zoo released more than 150 butterflies that had been bred in captivity onto the preserve in the summer of 2017.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Help Us Plant A Billion Trees!

A billion trees? It's a large number, but it's possible with your help!

Forests help sustain all life on Earth. Through The Nature Conservancy’s Plant a Billion Trees campaign, we aim to plant 1 billion trees by 2025. This will restore over 1.6 million acres of forests around the world - the equivalent of 1.6 million football fields. Together we can bring back our forests for a healthy tomorrow. Visit plantabillion.org for more information on how you can help.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Out Of Yellowstone - Revisited

It's winter time in North America. In the spirit of Transformation Tuesday and Throwback Thursday, this week we want to take you back in time (to 2010!) with a film highlighting the voices of ranchers, conservationists, scientists and others as they worked to preserve the herds of America's incredible Yellowstone National Park. This work continues today!

For the deer, elk and pronghorn in and around Yellowstone National Park, surviving the winter means finding adequate food and areas with low snow accumulation. But this critical winter range is increasingly threatened by energy and residential development. At stake is the very future of the Greater Yellowstone region's iconic wildlife. See how TNC is still transforming conservation!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Many Hands Make It Work

Middle school kids and gardening aren’t two topics we often put together. Yet, dozens of young Wyoming students turned out to plant sagebrush seedlings on a windy November day – and there was no extra credit! Check it out.

More information:
The Nature Conservancy has joined forces with the students on the Abandoned Mine Lands Native Plants Project (AML NP2). The multi-year effort is sponsored by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality – Abandoned Mine Lands Division. The project goal is to restore sagebrush on previously reclaimed abandoned mine sites around Wyoming.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Brown Pelican Released Back To Nature

Great Therapy: Releasing a Brown Pelican back to nature in San Francisco Bay. Volunteer Karen Jensen returns a special bird patient back to wild at Fort Baker, Sausalito, CA.