“We need, in a special way, to work twice as hard to help people understand that the animals are fellow creatures, that we must protect them and love them as we love ourselves.”
– César Chávez
César Chávez loved animals, and he became a vegetarian “after realizing that animals feel afraid, cold, hungry and unhappy like we do…”. The compassion Chávez expressed for animals is consistent with his practice of non-violence and sense of justice that characterized his life’s work to gain rights for farm workers.
For those who have time to walk around the gardens and along Tehachapi Creek, and sit and listen and look, it is likely you will see birds hopping amongst tree branches, swooping out to catch an insect, seeking nectar in flowers, or soaring over the hills hunting for rodents. Sometimes rabbits hop amongst grasses and shrubs, hungry bobcats stalk them, and rarely, a black bear makes an appearance.
Currently, the monument has more detailed information about birds than other types of animals, due to a birding event that initiated the first bird list for the area. This list will continue to be updated, and is available at the monument visitor center. A total of 51 species have been documented as of October 2017.