Voorhis Ecological Reserve
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Landscape at Voorhis Ecological Reserve
The Voorhis Ecological Reserve is located on the San Jose Hills that run between the Santa Ana and San Gabriel Mountains and consists of 76-acres of native habitat. In particular, the area known as Buzzard Peak is one of three areas in the eastern hills of LA County that still supports relatively undisturbed stands of southern oak woodland, chaparral, coastal sage scrub, and riparian woodland complex that were once common. The area adjacent to Cal Poly supports dense groves of California walnut, which is uncommon outside LA and Ventura counties. The reserve was identified as part of a Significant Ecological Area in 1976 by Los Angeles County, with a priority class 7 for an area that would provide for the preservation of relatively undisturbed examples of the natural biotic communities of Los Angeles County. The Los Angeles County General Plan stated that the area is of sufficient size and proximity to other habitats to support relatively healthy animal populations if preserved.
In 1983, the campus dedicated the area previously referred to as Box Canyon. It is to remain an untouched natural resource available to students as an enduring laboratory for the study of flora and fauna. Today, it continues to be a biologically diverse landscape that supports many species of concern.