December 1, 2015
As the Fall season descends behind a welcome curtain of soft rain, Ruby Habitat Foundation wants to thank you for your generous support, financial and otherwise. With your help, we have accomplished much this year:
- We provided a respite from the madding crowd for over 500 individual fishermen. We are fortunate that the waters on our property allow them to spread out and we averaged fewer than 3 fishermen per day. We also hosted over 500 visiting people who came to enjoy the birds, the solitude, the open space and the wildlife. These folks came from all walks of life and all corners of the globe. From Canada to Antarctica, from China to New Zealand, we had guests from all over.
- Our deliberate efforts to increase the Outdoor Education opportunities on the ranch yielded results. Students ranging from ages 6 to over 80 came to observe the 75+ species of birds, to get mucky and wet while wading in the ponds and waters in search of aquatic insects, and to get in touch with their personal muse while writing poetry. The Sheridan School District’s AP Biology class adopted our space as part of their “Fall Project”, contributing useful data about the relative health of the various waters on the ranch while simultaneously learning about water quality, critical thinking, and the Scientific Method. We are very proud to provide an outdoor venue for students of all ages!
- A group of students from China came to observe and learn about our efforts to balance agricultural production with wildlife habitat and recreation.
- Progress continues on our 5-year soil health trial. We are analyzing various approaches to improving soil health, and will have results to share next year.
- We hired a full-time Outreach Coordinator, Dave Delisi, both to welcome visitors to the ranch and to spread the word about our efforts.
- Our educational program on Golden Eagles informed over 100 people about these remarkable creatures, several of whom hunt and relax on the Woodson Ranch.
- Speaking of raptors, our two Bald Eagles produced two offspring who fledged in early June, a testimony to our efforts to provide secure and abundant habitat for wildlife.
- Working closely with our neighbors, we increased the effectiveness and safety of our own hunting program.
- We revised our website, rubyhabitat.org, established a Facebook presence (Ruby Habitat Foundation), and began publication of a quarterly e-newsletter. If you have yet to receive it, we need your email address—please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org
All of these activities have kept us busy and productive, providing an example for other landowners in a way that only a non-profit can. We have much to do in the coming year, from an experiment to compare Roundup use with a less chemical-intensive approach, to revitalizing both our Spring Creek and one of our seasonal wetland areas.
None of this would be possible without your continued support. We hope you will consider an additional contribution to the Ruby Habitat Foundation as you evaluate your various charitable objectives for 2015. We look forward to seeing you next year and wish you a warm, healthy and happy Holiday Season.
With humble thanks,
Les Gilman, Executive Director Dave Delisi, Outreach Coordinator