Fauna
Millions of years in the making, California’s unique animals roam a variety landscapes, national and state parks, our towns, neighborhoods and even our own backyards. Researchers are tracking changes to wildlife populations and what that means - from starfish and Sierra sheep to bears and beetles.

California is also home to some of the largest populations of domestic animals in the country. UCANR works with these working animals to produce our food sustainably.

Learn about how the UC is always working to keep our wildlife wild and our farm animals healthy.

Date: 9/28/2018
The Vernal Pools and Grasslands Reserve is natural area managed by UC Merced for research, outreach, and biodiversity preservation. This important ecosystem represents part of the 5% of vernal pools historically remaining in California, home to numerous rare and endangered flora and fauna such as species of fairy shrimp, tiger salamanders and amphibious plants. Often overlooked, the Central Valley of California hosts a wealth of wildlife. The student-driven Biota Project spotlights underrepresented ecosystems and voices in an effort to increase parity in science education.

Date: 9/24/2018
Grand initiatives such as the National Parks program, begun in the late 1800s, are for many people a hallmark of land conservation. However, the majority of land nationally (~60% overall; ranging from <5% to >95% on a state-by-state basis) is privately owned. These private lands can have conservation value too. Join Rangeland Manager Billy Freeman and UC Merced Management Professor Catherine Keske as they explore McKenzie Ranch, in the Sierra Nevada foothills of California to discover land conservation strategies that ensure public access and enjoyment of some of the nations otherwise hidden wonders, while also providing returns from the land to the private land owners. In a period of rapid global change, species range-shifts, and altering resource availability and risk, a diversified portfolio of lands and management practices may become increasingly important in conservation.

Date: 9/20/2018
Globally, over the past century, coastal fisheries have faced overharvesting and mismanagement. California is no exception. This video recounts stories from fishermen, and others engaged in commercial fisheries, about the decades-long struggle to replenish stocks through a variety of management measures. Through their experiences, we discover the many successes in recovering stocks, the capricious nature of the biology of some species, and also emerging challenges for managing fisheries sustainably, including climate change, regional resources management, access, and local infrastructure. Successfully managing the complex 'bioeconomic' dynamics of coupled natural and human ecosystems, such as fisheries, will provide an ongoing challenge of paramount importance for the survival of vibrant coastal communities.

Date: 12/1/2017
The largest non-commercial marine mass mortality event on record (as of 2013) created a 'natural experiment' and an opportunity to study genomic changes in wild populations with unprecedented detail. Rather than observing only the aftermath a team of researchers from UC Merced is reconstructing the population and genetic consequences of an epidemic outbreak of sea star wasting disease. The team measured the abundance and genetic variation of Pisaster ochraceus, a keystone species, in the year preceding mass mortality. They then repeated sampling of adults and juveniles in subsequent years, measuring population dynamics and genomic shifts during and after the disease outbreak. At a time when marine diseases and mass mortalities are on the rise, this study documents the impact of little-known wildlife diseases and potential trajectory of recovery in a keystone marine species.

Date: 7/7/2017
In much of California, if you've ever wandered the trails you've probably come across livestock. This short video gives you a fun look at a year in the life of a cow, so you'll have a better idea what's going on with that herd - winter, spring, summer or fall.

Date: 6/23/2017
Ever wonder what to do when you're walking Fido and you encounter livestock on the trail? This fun and quick video gives you all the details on how to keep both Bossie and Fido safe and happy.

Date: 6/9/2017
Ever wonder what to do when encountering grazing livestock on the open range or the trail? This fun and quick video shows you what to do so you and Bossie can both go on with your day in a peaceable kingdom.