Poff Ranch Open Space Preserve

Status Completed County Sonoma
Project Type Non-mitigation Location 38.40918° N, -123.06780° W Map
Project Area (Acres) No Data Last Updated 10 March 2017

Project Identification

911 JV - Record Number

Habitat Plan

ActivityHabitatSubHabitatAcresActivity StatusWater Regime
No Data

Related Habitat Impacts

HabitatAcres LostType of Loss
No Data


No Data


DateTypeDescriptionSite Name
2007-09-28 Project start date


Contact Kim Batchelder Sonoma County Agricultural and Open Space District Not applicable/Unknown
Contact Sheri Emerson Sonoma County Agricultural and Open Space District Not applicable/Unknown


No Data

Related CRAM Assessments

Visit DateVersionSite NameWetland TypeIndex Score
No Data

Performance Criteria

StatusDetailsEvaluation Date
No Data

Project Description

Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District (SCAPOSD) acquired the 1,236-acre Poff Ranch in western Sonoma County in 2007 to protect the scenic woodlands, meadows, and critical habitats on the property, as well as allow for appropriate low-intensity public outdoor recreation. Poff Ranch was the largest privately-owned coastal land holding between the Russian River and Bodega Bay prior to this acquisition. Adjacent to thousands of acres of Sonoma Coast State Park land, the property is a key link in a chain of protected lands that stretches from Bodega Bay to the Jenner Headlands. The District currently leases the property for cattle grazing. The property supports coastal grasslands, redwood groves, mixed conifer-hardwood forests, coastal scrub, and riparian scrub. Steep gullies and ephemeral stream corridors, often fringed by small wetlands, cross the landscape. Poff Ranch includes portions of the headwaters of Willow Creek and Scotty Creek, both of which currently have steelhead populations and coho salmon in Willow Creek. Intact native vegetation and limited development on Poff Ranch protect downstream channels from excessive sedimentation and nutrient runoff as well as provide natural sources of woody debris and coarse sediment that are critical for sustaining salmonid habitat. All of the habitats present—forest, woodland, scrub, riparian, and wetland—contribute significantly to local and regional native biodiversity and habitat connectivity. Proposed projects on the property include improving the road to prevent sediment runoff and erosion, addressing other areas of erosion on the property, improving the grazing-related water infrastructure system to both enhance existing wetland habitats and to provide appropriately-located water sources for cattle, and improve the grazing-related fencing to protect sensitive areas of the property and allow for a rotational grazing regime.
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How to Use the Habitat Development Curve

Habitat Development Curves (HDCs) are used to determine the developmental status and trajectory of on-the-ground projects to create, restore, or enhance California wetland and stream habitats. Each HDC is based on assessments of habitat condition for different age areas of one habitat type that in aggregate represent the full spectrum of habitat development. The assessments of condition are provided by expert applications of the California Rapid Assessment Method (CRAM). Visit the CRAM website for more information about CRAM.

For each HDC, reference condition is represented by areas of a habitat that consistently get very high CRAM scores, have not been subject to disruptive management practices, and exist within landscapes that are protected and managed for their natural conditions. The horizontal lines intersecting the top of an HDC represent the mean CRAM score and standard deviation of scores for 25 qualifying reference areas.

The age of a project is estimated as the elapsed time in years between the groundwork end date for the project and the date of the CRAM assessment. To add or update a groundwork end date, use the Project Events form in Project Tracker (ptrack.ecoatlas.org). The minimum age in years of a non-project area, including any natural reference area, is estimated from all available local information, including historical maps and imagery, historical written accounts, and place-specific scientific studies of habitat development.

An HDC can be used to address the following questions:

  1. At what time in the future will the area of assessed habitat achieve the reference condition or other milestones in habitat development? The HDC can answer this question if the CRAM score for the assessed area is within the confidence interval of the HDC. The answer is the time in years along the HDC between the current age of the assessed area and the future date corresponding to the intersection of the HDC and the reference condition or other milestone.
  2. Is the area of assessed habitat likely to develop faster, slower, or at the same pace as most other areas of the same habitat type? The habitat area is likely to develop faster, slower, or at the same pace if the CRAM score for the area is above, below, or within the confidence interval of the HDC, respectively.
  3. What can be done to improve the condition of the habitat area or to increase its rate of development? HDCs by themselves cannot answer this question. Possible answers can be inferred by the following analysis that involves HDCs:
    1. Examine the HDC for each of the four CRAM Attributes;
    2. Identify the Attribute(s) scoring below the HDC;
    3. For any low-scoring Attribute, examine the component Metric Scores (note: the Metric Scores for any public CRAM assessment in the CRAM database can be obtained through EcoAtlas);
    4. Assume the low score of an Attribute is due to its low-scoring Metric(s);
    5. Consider modifying the design or management of the habitat area in ways that will sustainably increase its score(s) for the low-scoring Metric(s).

For more information about CRAM Attributes and Metrics, including their scientific rationale, see the CRAM Manual.

Display Habitat Development Curves For Wetland Type:

CRAM Site Scores