Rana Creek Ranch
Aerial views of the Ranch
The Ranch is rustic and largely undeveloped. Improvements include an environmental education building, staff housing, corrals and farm equipment. A restricted airstrip supports the agricultural and ranching purposes, including the cattle husbandry and breeding. Importantly, the airstrip also serves as an emergency staging facility for fire suppression efforts for the entire community.
Ranch Creek Ranch, now privately owned, spans 14,085 acres and has a variety of land uses, including open space, irrigated pasture, production of native plant species, and grazing land. The property has been used for grazing for over 100 years. The topography of the Ranch varies from flat alluvial lands along Carmel Valley Road to steep, rocky mountains. The varied landscape includes streams, stock ponds, wetlands, irrigated pasture, grazing lands, and wildlife habitat.
The Ranch consists of two soil types (Danville sandy clay loam and Gorgonio sandy loam) that are categorized as Prime Farmland and one soil type (Chamise shaly loam) categorized as Farmland of Statewide Significance. Much of the rest of the Ranch is grazing land.
The Ranch is serviced by 14 private wells and has sufficient water to support its agricultural operations. The Ranch also holds the mineral rights.
Plant and Animal Habitats
There are four general plant communities on the Ranch:
1) Annual Grassland (55%)
This habitat provides wildlife cover, foraging, nesting and burrowing locations. It is known to support 16 species of mammal, over 50 bird species, and 18 species of reptile. Notable species include northern pacific rattlesnake, California tiger salamander, grasshopper sparrow, horned lark, California ground squirrel, and American badger.
2) Oak Woodland (34%)
Oak woodlands provide wildlife with an array of resources such as cover, foraging, nesting and roosting sites. It is known to support 26 species.of mammal, over 85 bird species, and 18 species of reptile. Notable species include acorn woodpeckers, black-tailed deer, Virginia opossum, yellow-billed magpie, arboreal salamander, and Monterey ring-necked snake.
3) Scrub/Shrub (8%)
The scrub community provides food and cover for a wide array of wildlife. It is known to support 16 species of mammal, over 45 bird species, and 9 species of reptile. Notable species include Monterey dusky-footed woodrat, brush rabbit, California thrasher, wrentit, coast range fence lizard, and pacific gopher snake.
4) Riparian/Wetland (3%)
This plant community is known to support 20 species of mammal, over 50 bird species, and 15 species of reptile. Notable species include California red-legged frog, Monterey ensatina, brush rabbit, yellow warbler, raccoon, and hermit thrush.