November 05, 2021

The pandemic has forced many ACR programs to ‘go virtual’ over the past year, but preserve stewardship is an in-person and on-the-land endeavor.

Understanding the need for ongoing boots-on-the-ground support and with a generous spirit, Justin Dierkhising, owner of Justin Dierkhising Construction Management Services of Petaluma and an ACR Business Partner, saw an opportunity.

In partnership with Martin Griffin Preserve staff and with a team of hardworking volunteers, Justin envisioned, designed and built two new trail bridges that cross creeks on ACR’s Martin Griffin Preserve.  The existing bridges were old and no longer safe for the many hikers, volunteers and school groups that use the structures on a trail called the Zumie Loop, which winds through a tranquil redwood...

November 04, 2021

Late last month, friends and fans of M.F.K. Fisher and film gathered (adhering to City of San Francisco COVID-19 recommendations) for a magical afternoon at famed Foreign Cinema to benefit the restoration, repair, and maintenance of M.F.K. Fisher's Last House and the completion of filmmaker Gregory Bezat's latest project, The Art of Eating: The Life of M.F.K. Fisher. Generous supporters raised nearly $15,000.

October 19, 2021
Scientist holding an iPad by an oak tree for a virtual visit in oak woodlands

Since 2020, we have welcomed more than 4,600 students from 56 Bay Area schools on virtual visits. These virtual visits alternate between Bouverie Preserve in Glen Ellen and Martin Griffin Preserve in Stinson Beach. (Above photo by Liz Martins). 

Students arrive at virtual visits with eager curiosity

Students from the Bridges Academy in Oakland kicked off our fall 2021 season of virtual visits with a good dose of excitement to learn about oak galls, pond life, and more from ACR education staff joining them from the field.

At Bouverie Preserve, we are helping students use their observation skills to compare similarities and differences of two trees and look for signs of animals using the trees for food and shelter. At Martin Griffin Preserve, we explore pond...

October 13, 2021

Audubon Canyon Ranch Board of Directors is pleased to announced the appointment of Tom Gardali as Chief Executive Officer of the sixty-year-old organization. He will assume the role on November 29, 2021.

“Tom’s depth of experience in conservation science is the right fit for ACR and for a region facing the ongoing conservation challenges of dwindling biodiversity and climate-driven wildfire,” said ACR Board President Carol Lynn Wood. “Over the course of his career, Tom has proven himself to be a team-focused leader and a dedicated advocate for both practical and innovative approaches to natural resource stewardship. Importantly, he is committed to continuing ACR’s journey to be a diverse, inclusive, and equitable organization. On behalf of the entire board, we welcome Tom to...

September 09, 2021

The winners of the Second Annual Last House Writing Contest, chosen from more than a dozen essays submitted in youth and adult categories, were announced in early September.

“Once again, we had so many excellent entries our judges had a very difficult job. Writers took to heart our theme this year, which was in the spirit of M.F.K. Fisher’s How to Cook a Wolf, to write about the power and magic of survival skills,” said Susie Allen, who manages the programming for Last House.

Nature, gardening, wild animals, and cooking during the pandemic were themes for many writers. Others explored the joy of sharing food and new cooking adventures with loved ones.

The panel of judges, coordinated by food and wine consultant Clark Wolf, included some of the most...

August 16, 2021

ACR is extremely delighted to welcome ten prescribed fire community members to the first class of Fire Forward Fellows. Over the past couple of years as volunteer fire-lighters, these Fellows have engaged in prescribed burns, land stewardship, community building and some have even taken on wildfire assignments. Now they look to build leadership skills under the guidance of our Fire Forward team and in partnership with their employer organizations.

Each Fellow has arrived with basic wildland firefighter training and some on-the-ground experience. During the one-year fellowship, these ten will each engage in more than 300 hours of professional development focused on planning and implementing ecologically-driven prescribed fire and supporting their qualifications as Squad Boss and...

August 16, 2021

Living with Lions principal investigator Dr. Quinton Martins recently collared four male mountain lions (P24, P25, P30 and P31) in western and northern Sonoma County near Sebastopol, Healdsburg, Cazadero and Geyserville after each was implicated in the killing of a sheep or goat.

The Living with Lions Project is mandated to conduct research on lions in the North Bay and its researchers can monitor lions but not interfere with the management of mountain lions. When a lion-related livestock loss occurs, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) permits our team to collar the animal when granted permission by the landowner. This is a significant step in the right direction for our need to better understand the diet and behavior of lions in our area. If the lion were...

August 10, 2021

ACR is excited to collaborate with Cal State East Bay professor Tony Marks-Block and UC Berkeley assistant professor, Coast Miwok, and Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria citizen Peter Nelson, on a prescribed fire research project that aims to learn more about the effects of prescribed fire on acorn pests, acorn phenology (the study of the timing of life cycle events), and acorn gathering efficiency.

“Indigenous peoples across California have used fire to reduce acorn pest infestations, thus Indigenous ecological knowledge is guiding the development of research objectives and methods,” explained Marks-Block.

The study will compare acorns collected in prescriptively burned oak woodlands on Bouverie Preserve in Glen Ellen and adjacent woodlands on Sonoma Land Trust’s Glen...

July 09, 2021

Annual migrations of shorebirds are among the longest treks in the world. Whimbrels are among the most far-reaching, with movements between subarctic and Arctic breeding grounds to non-breeding locations in the southern hemisphere spanning up to 5,400 miles.

Not a simple point A to point B calculation, these annual trips vary in timing, site selection and more. Understanding variation in these traits among populations can help uncover mechanisms driving migratory behaviors and identify potential population threats.

In a study published this month in the Journal of Field Ornithology, ACR Director of Conservation Science Nils Warnock and co-authors set out to discover the nuances in movements of Whimbrels breeding in Alaska, a population that numbers nearly 40,000...

June 22, 2021

In April, the ACR Board selected Brakeley Search as a partner to undertake the recruitment of ACR's next chief executive officer. Based in the Bay Area since 2008, Brakeley Search specializes in delivering high quality executive search services to non-profits.

We are delighted to announce that the search is now underway. Please review complete position description and appliction process.

The Opportunity:

Audubon Canyon Ranch engages and affects the community through its mission of “connecting nature, people, and science in a rapidly changing world,” its ecologically-significant properties and preserves, and its varied stewardship, research, and...