Once upon a time on Paicines Ranch

Once upon a time, there was a magical ranch tucked neatly into the rolling valleys of California. On it, all living things worked together in a beautiful orchestra of community.  On those 7,000 acres of land, holistic grazing practices were put into place, birds, plants, and soils were monitored for biodiversity health, and the entire ranch was an open classroom for those with open minds to come learn. This place hosted researchers, artists, community gatherings, wedding events, and students of the world. This place isn’t just an ideal storybook, it exists; The Paicines Ranch.
For one month, Keith and I had the fantastic opportunity to experience the cup-runneth-over warmth and community while offering our diverse skills of carpentry, photography, biology, and pot luck parties. Here’s a glimpse into once upon a time…
A few hours old, this lamb cuddles against his mother.
Spring has sprung after many dry years; the San Benito river’s willows and cottonwoods have leafed out.
Biologist Mel Preston identifies the native and non-native grasses and explains their connection to the fungus and soil health.
Michelle, the local ranchhand intern, rocks her boots.
 This Savannah Sparrow takes a break to take in the views near Teal Pond.

 

Turkey vultures enjoying the lush hillsides of Paicines Ranch.
After the 1100 head of cattle had been moved to a new grazing pasture, they enjoyed sunset views over a delicious assortment of grasses.
The happy goats of Paicines Ranch enjoy the abundance of food, even though mom said to never chew with your food hanging out of your mouth
These Point Blue biologists use soil samples from the area to identify the relationship between management practices and ecological function of the rangelands. One of the primary measurements is organic carbon to measure trends over time. Data about vegetation, birds, and grazing are monitored as well.
Keith showcases the mobile chicken house he built from scratch, designed to keep the chickens cozy and safe from predators at night.
A beautiful day for a walk and talk with the “Women in Ranching” event at the ranch.
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