Wildlife Spotlight: Turkey Vulture
Not your average turkey, the turkey vulture is a large dark feathered bird that can be seen scavenging around the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks. With massive broad wings encasing long fingers and tails that extend past their toes in flight, turkey vultures can be easily spotted as they are larger than most raptors, measuring 25-32” in length with a 70” wingspan.
Thankful for Nature, Volunteers and Partners
The feeling of fall is in the air on the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks and Thanksgiving is just around the corner! At Irvine Ranch Conservancy, we have so much to be thankful for this year; from the beauty of nature to our volunteers and partners.
The Landmarks are an important part of Orange County’s native wildlands, which is why we need to protect and restore these sensitive habitats to ensure they thrive for years to come. Thanks to our dedicated volunteers, Irvine Ranch Conservancy can successfully execute restoration projects throughout the Landmarks, as well as create remarkable experiences for the community. Everyday our volunteers donate their time to our natural resources, whether it's guiding a hike, tending to plants, watching for fires, or inspiring future stewards, we couldn’t be more thankful.
Invasive Species Spotlight: Shot Hole Borer
There are a wide variety of native species on the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks that are crucial to maintaining a healthy ecosystem. However, invasive plants, animals and insects compete with these native species for vital resources, making them one of the most critical threats to native habitats found in Orange County.
Irvine Ranch Conservancy’s Invasive Species Control team works collaboratively with volunteers and regional partners to monitor and control invasive species from degrading natural habitats. One invasive species that poses a threat to the Landmarks is the Shot Hole Borer.
Community engagement is at the heart of programming at Irvine Ranch Conservancy. From valuable partnerships to meaningful connections with the community, we offer dynamic recreational activities and informal learning opportunities for nature lovers to experience the beauty of the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks. Conservancy staff members and volunteers help provide unique experiences as a way for community members to develop a personal connection to native wildlands.
Program Coordinator Chrystene Newman works with the IRC Community Engagement and Education team where she leads activities on the Landmarks and supports a variety of programs and special events, such as invasive species management and Wilderness Access Days. Chrystene has been a part of the IRC team for nearly three years and was a volunteer prior to her current job position.
“Before working at IRC, I had no idea there were so many beautiful wildlands in the heart of Orange County,” said Chrystene. “I was so excited to learn there was an opportunity to work with the land management non-profit that helps to tend that resource, and I was really drawn to the diversity of roles, projects, partnerships, and opportunities.”
Welcome to the Irvine Ranch Conservancy "News from the Field" blog. These articles are written by Conservancy staff about activities and projects in and near the Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks.