The story of Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve has long been a favorite story to tell and a scene to film, and there have been many photographers and videographers here over the years. A small sampling of videos produced about or on the ranch are available below. A more complete collection can be found on our YouTube channel.
Nearly fifty years ago David Bamberger went public with Church’s Chicken and used the capital to purchase 5,500 acres of overgrazed land that was considered some of the poorest acreage in the Texas Hill Country. He devoted the rest of his life to restoring it. David cleared overgrown woody vegetation, allowed native grasses to grow, and literally created Water from Stone. The grasses soaked in rains, took moisture into the porous rock below, and filled hillside aquifers instead of running off. There was only one spring when he bought the place, now there are eleven. There were only 48 species of birds on the first bird count, in 2014 they counted 238 species.
His example of land stewardship has been replicated across the region and he’s considered a visionary in land management and water conservation. Learn more about supporting our educational programs here.
This video shows the innovative environmental education program created at Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve. Our Texas Hill Country ranch hosts students from neighboring Austin and San Antonio, placing them in the outdoor classroom that Mother Nature provides.
This video was produced to show schools, administrators and even donors the very best Selah has to offer. Not every school is capable or even interested in a 3-day/2-night field trip to Selah, but viewing this will give you an idea of the types of programs we can offer, even just for a day-trip.
Meet a man who turned his private ranch into an experiment in sustainable habitat. The Bamberger Ranch Preserve features a man-made bat cave, dinosaur tracks, fossils, endangered species, and hiking trails, all designed in an eco-friendly way.
The Bamberger Ranch is a restorative research facility covering 5,500 acres in Johnson City, Texas. It is focused on habitat restoration, conservation and sharing these skills with the public. The following video was filmed and edited by Tyler B. Barstow.
From CNN “Earth Matters” February 5, 1995 ‘Natural Born Salesman,’ reporter David Mattingly. Go here to learn more about the Scimitar-horned Oryx Survival Program at the ranch.
Mr. Bamberger imparts his wisdom, knowledge and inspiration with neighboring Pedernales River watershed landowners on the importance of good, sound land stewardship and how it affects our ground water supplies.
J. David Bemberger describes his ranch and the conservation practices he utilizes at his Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve.
The Texas Leopold Conservation Award is presented by: Sand County Foundation, Lee and Ramona Bass Foundation and the Silver Eagle Distributors. www.leopoldconservationaward.org
Thanks to the 2010 grants from Powell Foundation, Still Water Foundation and Johanna Favrot Foundation, the Bamberger Ranch is able to host 5th graders from inner-city schools to enhance their education in the natural sciences. This video is a snippet of a typical week in October.
J. David Bamberger received the Victor Emanuel Conservation Award from the Travis Audubon Society in October 2013 for his long-term commitment to land stewardship at Selah. Before being presented with the award by Victor Emanuel, Travis Audubon broadcast a video of congratulatory words from respected local environmentalists, past Selah campers, and our friend, Dr. Jane Goodall. Afterwards, J. David spoke to a large crowd of friends, activists and community leaders about his philosophies of conservation and the vital role volunteers play within organizations such as their local Audubon chapter. It was a truly inspiring day!
Tribute film created by Carolyn Hunt.
Filmed on July 5, 2009, tens of thousands of Mexican Freetailed bats emerge from the world’s only man-made cave built for the “free will use” of bats, a.k.a. the Chiroptorium at Selah, Bamberger Ranch Preserve in Johnson City, Texas. Scientists from Boston University were on-site with infrared camera equipment and documented a total of 90,000 bats emerging from the cave that evening. A maternal colony with baby bats getting ready to fly, scientists predicted the emergence size will double in the next few weeks or month.
David Bamberger has done a fabulous job on his land. He is a great story teller and teacher. If you get to meet him or more importantly if you can bring your kids to see him you will all be rewarded. There is absolutely nothing phony about this man but he will admit he likes to brag, however he also admits if it’s the truth it’s not bragging!
JUNE 2009 — David Bamberger set out to buy the most abused land in the Texas hill country and help it recover to its natural state. Thanks to his efforts, he’s a Texas Parks and Wildlife Lone Star Land Steward and the 2009 winner of the Aldo Leopold Conservation Award for Texas, the state’s top honor recognizing wildlife conservation on private land. For information about the Lone Star Land Steward Awards, including how to nominate a property, go here.
Golden-cheeked warblers are an endangered species breeding only in the hill country of central Texas. Their breeding habitat is being destroyed by development.
A visit with some old-time deer hunters camped at the Bamberger Ranch near Johnson City, Texas. The founder of Bamberger Ranch Preserve, J. David Bamberger and Margaret Bamberger talk about the environmental and economic impacts of hunting. Filmed in 2002.
Question and answer session with Andy Sansom addressing conservation easements and eminent domain.
Question and answer session with Andy Sansom addressing the politics and economics of protecting the Hill Country.