California Landowner Survey

About half of California’s forest and rangelands, ~ 34 million acres, are in private ownership. These forest and rangelands include hardwood forest, conifer woodland, oak woodland, grassland, and shrub (chaparral) vegetation types. These lands produce important ecosystem services such as clean air and water, wildlife habitat, and scenic landscapes, yet they are fragmented into nearly 800,000 individual ownerships, each of which is managed independently by a different landowner with unique goals, constraints, and characteristics. The cumulative impact of these landowners will play a critical role in determining the future of California’s wildlife habitat and open space, and yet, very little is known about them.

Survey Cover

In winter of 2008, we sent a mail survey to a sample of California forest and rangeland owners from 10 different counties. The survey asked landowners about their reasons for owning the land and how long they have owned it, what their information needs are, and about their willingness to invest in sustainable practices and land uses. The goal of this research is to better understand landowners and their relationship with the land they own, in order to help develop outreach approaches, and to understand patterns and drivers of land use change and land management.  Results from this survey will be used to  to inform future outreach to landowners by UC Cooperative Extension.

Publications from this project are here.

Shasta Ferranto worked on this project with Lynn Huntsinger, Christy Getz, and many others.

This research was funded by UC Cooperative Extension.