From condors to kit foxes, as many as 20 state- and federally listed species — and many others found nowhere else on Earth — make their homes on California's Tejon Ranch. Covering more than 270,000 contiguous acres from the Transverse Ranges foothills across the Antelope Valley, over the southern Sierra mountains and back down onto the San Joaquin Valley floor, the ranch is located at the convergence of five geomorphic provinces and four floristic regions — the only location of its kind in California.

Tejon Ranch houses federally designated California condor critical habitat, hosts 23 known types of plant communities, and serves as an “oak laboratory” for more than one third of all California oak species. Unfortunately, this astoundingly diverse landscape could be the future site of widespread sprawl development.


The Center has led a multi-year campaign to push for better management and limit harmful development on the Ranch. The Center and Tribal groups brought a lawsuit against the Tejon Mountain Village luxury resort development, which would scar thousands of acres of habitat for the critically imperiled California condor. The Center also led a campaign against the 12,000-acre Centennial development, which would convert some of California’s most important remaining native grasslands and spectacular wildflower fields into sprawl. The Center and allies are currently challenging Centennial in litigation.

In 2008 some conservation groups came to an agreement with the Tejon Ranch Company that may allow massive development on the Ranch to move forward, even though it would destroy precious natural areas — including condor critical habitat. Although the agreement does possess some positive aspects, the private “Ranchwide Agreement” would allow the destruction of many of the most biologically important areas on the Ranch and endanger the health of the area as a whole.

The Center and allies have long argued that this agreement is inadequate to protect the Ranch, particularly when the state of California has spent millions of taxpayer dollars to preserve portions of it. In December 2020 the conservation groups that signed the Ranchwide Agreement filed a lawsuit against Tejon Ranch after it allegedly failed to make legally required payments under the agreement.

Photo of Tejon Ranch by ian02054/Flickr.