All CEP Technical Reports
CEP Technical Report No. 36 1996: Status of Protected
Area Systems in the Wider Caribbean Region
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
(Gulf States & Florida)
Area 1,224,090 sq. km.
Protected Areas (PAs)
|PAs with Marine or Coastal Zones||Extension|
|World Heritage Sites||1||1||585,867|
(1) Totals have been adjusted to avoid double counting areas that are classified in 2 or more categories.
Policy and Legislation
The US is a federal nation, comprising 48 coterminous states, as well as the disjunct states of Alaska and Hawaii. Each of these 50 states has its own Constitution and legislation. Overseas, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam and the Virgin Islands each has a local legislature, the acts of which may be modified or annulled by Congress. For detailed information concerning Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands see the relevant sections in this volume.
In North America the protected area systems are large and complex. Policy and legislation for the conservation of protected areas is found at both state and federal level. Within states, a number of sites have been protected at the local and regional levels. This report deals largely with protected areas declared under federal legislation and administered by federal agencies in the Gulf States and Florida.
Parks conservation in the US began in earnest on 30 June 1864, when President Abraham Lincoln signed a law granting the Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias to California to be held for "public use, resort, and recreation...inalienable for all time." A short time after this, on 1 March 1872 Yellowstone was declared as a "national park", widely accepted as the first national park in the world.
Federal Policy and Legislation
Legislation governing protected areas is largely covered under single organic acts or series of laws enacted by Congress giving protected area jurisdiction to specific agencies. These areas of responsibility have been grouped into 7 protected areas systems: National Park System, National Wilderness Preservation System, National Forest System, National Marine Sanctuary System, National Estuarine Research Reserves System, the National Wildlife Refuge System and the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, (see below and Annex I). All but the last are represented in the Gulf States region.
Individual federal laws are contained in a series of volumes (Statutes at Large) in the order in which they were passed, and subsequently codified and put into the United States Code (USC). The President may also delegate specific duties to specific departments and agencies by Executive Order. Regulations for the differing categories of protected area are drafted in the relevant department or agency and put before the public in open hearings and published both in the draft and final form in the Federal Register. Final regulations are, like individual pieces of legislation which are passed by Congress, codified, appearing in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) (Annex I).
National Park System
National parks and other categories of lands within this system are established by individual acts of Congress. The National Park Service was established by the Act of 1916, Title 16 of the USC, Chapter 1 (16 USC 1). It contains the authorising legislation, or "organic act" for the National Park Service. This law stipulates that "the Service...shall promote and regulate the use of the federal areas known as national parks, monuments, and reservations hereinafter specified..."
The National Park Service has responsibility for three broad types of areas, natural, historical and recreational, represented by some 16 sub-categories under the National Park System. These include: national park, national monument, national reserve, national preserve, national recreation area, national historic site, national historic park, national battlefield, national seashore, national lakeshore, national scenic trail, national river, as well as national wild and scenic river (Annex I). Detailed definitions for these different categories are not provided under general legislation, and restrictions and regulations vary considerably between sites of the same category.
National Wilderness Preservation System
This is based on the Wilderness Act (Wilderness Act, 1964, PL 88-577, 16 USC 1131-1136). The Act establishes criteria for the management of areas of land as "wilderness" and the processes under which many areas have been added to the system. Areas are added only by individual acts of Congress (Annex I). Four federal agencies (USNPS, USFS, USFWS and USBLM) are authorised and mandated to manage wilderness. A large proportion of the designated areas lie within other categories of protected land administered by the federal agencies, and, where this is the case, the additional categorisation as wilderness increases protection.
National Forest System
This is based on the Forest Reserves Act, often referred to as the Creative Act, 1891 (USC Title 16, Chapter 2 (16 USC 2); the Organic Administration Act, 1897 (16 USC 475); and the Weeks Law and Resources Planning Act. The US Forest Service has responsibility for national forests, national grasslands and land utilisation projects. Within national forests are a number of administrative designations: forests are classed into general or special interest areas, the latter listed as scenic areas, palaeontological areas, geological areas, botanical areas and zoological areas (Annex I).
The resources of these lands are managed according to the Multiple Use-Sustained Yield Act, 1960 and the National Forest Management Act, 1976. The former established the policy that national forests be established and administered for "outdoor recreation, range, timber, watershed and wildlife and fish purposes", while the latter required the development and implementation of integrated plans for the management of forest and rangeland ecosystems. In addition to its own legal and administrative categories, the Forest Service manages lands in the following categories: wilderness area, national recreation area, research natural area, national wild and scenic river, and national monument.
National Wild and Scenic Rivers System
This is based on the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act (USC, Title 16, Chapter 28) of 2 October 1968. The system was authorised by Congress in 1968, declaring certain selected rivers of the nation as national wild and scenic rivers. They are designated as wild river areas, scenic river areas, or recreational river areas, and include both federal and state land. The Law states that the system shall comprise rivers that are designated by Act of Congress or designated by a legislature of the state(s) through which they flow (Annex I). No information was available concerning the presence of areas within this system in the Gulf States region.
National Estuarine Research Reserves System and National Marine Sanctuaries
Congress has authorised the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to maintain two types of protected areas: national marine sanctuaries and national estuarine research reserves. The National Marine Sanctuary Programme was authorised by the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act, 1972 (PL 92-532), as amended, 16 USC 1431 et seq. National marine sanctuaries are established in the ocean and coastal environment for resource protection and management of compatible uses. The National Estuarine Research Reserve System was authorised by section 315 of the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972 (PL 92-583), as amended, 16 USC 1451 et seq (Annex I).
National Wildlife Refuge System
The Organic Act relating to national wildlife refuges is the National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act, 1966, which expresses policy and provides guidelines for operating the system. The most important category in this system is the national wildlife refuge, although waterfowl production areas and co-ordination areas also form part of the system. The Wilderness Act, 1964 and the Endangered Species Act, 1973 (revised 1982, supplemented in the International Environmental Protection Act 1983) have some bearing on the system. In 1903, Pelican Island, Florida, was protected as a wildlife refuge under an executive order. Subsequent growth in numbers of wildlife refuges created under executive order resulted in the need for a management authority.
Policy and direction for the Refuge System are identified in the USFWS's refuge manual, describing four broad goals for the management of the System: to preserve, restore and enhance populations of species that are becoming endangered; to perpetuate the migratory bird resource; to preserve a natural biodiversity on refuge lands; and to provide for an understanding and appreciation of ecology and Man's role in the environment and provide for recreation where this is compatible with the primary purposes of the specific refuge.
Department of Defence Lands
The Organic Act relating to Department of Defence (DoD) land, federal statutes (Title 16, USC) authorises the Secretary of Defence "to carry out a programme of planning for the development, maintenance, and co-ordination of wildlife, fish and game conservation, and rehabilitation in military reservations".
The Endangered Species Act, 1973 has some relation to the protection of land. This Act lists some 600 species (a further 3,000 species are considered as candidates for listing). Among the measures listed for the protection of these species is the designation of critical habitat for listed species and that this habitat should also receive protection.
There is also a considerable body of legislation which relates to the protection of wetland areas within the US, this includes: the Clean Water Act, 1977; Executive Order 11990 Protection of Wetlands, 1977; the Food Security Act, 1985 (Swampbuster and other provisions); Emergency Wetland Act, 1986; Tax Reform Act, 1986; and Water Resources Development Act, 1986. It is estimated that the total area of wetlands protected under such legislation may be in excess of 40 million ha.
State Policy and Legislation
Each of the 50 states within the United States has its own state park system, with at least one protected area management agency (Myers and Green 1989). Comparable data for state and local protected areas within the Gulf States region were not available at the time this report was prepared.
Conventions & Treaties
Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region (Cartagena Convention, 1983)
Convention on Wetlands of International Importance especially as Waterfowl Habitat (Ramsar, 1971)
Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (World Heritage, 1972)
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES, 1973)
Programmes & Associations
UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB, 1972)
Caribbean Environment Programme (CEP, 1981) and its Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife Protocol (SPAW, 1990)
Four of the five principal federal land management agencies are active within the region, and others with minor roles are also present. Only limited information was reviewed concerning state and local protected areas (Waugh and Perez Gil 1992). The distribution of areas within the Gulf States region by agency is shown below, based upon data in this volume.
|Management Agency||No. of Protected Areas||PAs with Marine or Coastal Zones||Extension ha|
National Park Service (NPS), US Department of the Interior was established in 1916 with two main aims: to conserve the scenery and natural and historic objects and wildlife within the areas under its jurisdiction; and to provide for public access and enjoyment of these areas. The efforts to balance these two missions have shaped the development of this agency, making it unique among the federal natural resource management agencies. As part of its science programme, the NPS maintains ties to research and academic institutions through a network of Co-operative Park Study Units at major universities.
Nationally the NPS administers over 360 units, covering over 32 million ha, including sites of both natural and cultural significance, visited by over 360 million people each year. Appropriations legislation for the fiscal year 1993 has designated some US$992.4 million for the operation of the national park system, with US$118.9 million to be derived from the Land and Water Conservation Fund to be granted for land acquisition and state assistance, and a further US$231.8 million for construction, improvements, repair or replacement of physical facilities. . NPS has over 13,000 full time employees, and nearly double this number, with part time employees and volunteers, during peak visitation periods. Regionally, the NPS is the largest protected areas land management agency with responsibility for nearly two-thirds of federal holdings.
The US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), US Department of the Interior: The central aim of the Service is to conserve, protect and enhance fish and wildlife populations and their habitats. It has principal authority and responsibility for migratory birds, threatened and endangered species, and lands under Service control.
Nationally the Service employs around 7,000 people, with a headquarters in Washington and eight regional offices. Appropriations legislation for the fiscal year 1993 has designated some US$535.1 million for resource management (as a guide, in 1990 somewhat less than one third of this figure went to "refuge operations and maintenance"). A further US$76.2 million has been designated for land acquisition to be derived from the Land and Water Conservation Fund in 1993, and a further US$82.1 million for construction of buildings and other facilities. The most important protected areas under USFWS jurisdiction include national wildlife refuges, waterfowl production areas, and co-ordination areas. Regionally the FWS manages the over 50% of the regions protected areas, which cover nearly one-third of federal protected area lands.
The US Forest Service (USFS), US Department of Agriculture was established in 1905 and has often been faced with the balancing the conflicting demands of production and protection in the forest resources under its authority.. Appropriations legislation for the fiscal year 1993 has designated some US$1,318.5 million for the management, protection, improvement, and utilisation of the national forest system, with a number of large additional funds covering fire protection, fire fighting, construction, research and land acquisition. In this latter fund, US$62.9 million have been designated for land acquisition, to be derived from the Land and Water Conservation Fund in 1993.
Of the 77.4 million ha managed in the National Forest System, some 24 million ha are considered as potentially suitable for timber production. Although a proportion of these will remain protected from timber production. Regionally, the USFS has a reduced presence, managing 16 areas covering 63,000 ha.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), US Department of Commerce was established in 1970 with a broad range of aims from managing marine resources, to mapping, to meteorology, to oceanographic and atmospheric research. Appropriations legislation for the fiscal year 1993 has designated some US$1,539 million for the operations, research, and facilities for the entire organisation. Only a very small proportion of this, however will in any way be related to protected areas (see below).
Through the Sanctuary Programme, NOAA is empowered to enforce protected area regulations, and to manage protected areas in two distinct programmes covering national estuarine research reserves and national marine sanctuaries. NOAA works co-operatively with state agencies and with research institutions in the management of the national estuarine research reserve system. Regionally, NOAA is responsible for four marine sanctuaries and reserves, covering 44,000 ha.
The annual budget for managing the national marine sanctuary programme is less than US$10 million annually. The federal share of the budget for the administration of national estuarine research reserves is US$3.2 million annually (NOAA, pers. comm., 1992).
The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), US Department of the Interior, authorised under Title 25 of the US Code, does not have a specific mandate for protected areas, but under general provisions for welfare of indigenous citizens of the US it can administer reservation lands for nature conservation. BIA provides technical assistance to tribes, with a general mandate for multiple uses, and assists in protected area management upon application by a tribe.
The four services of the Department of Defence manage approximately 10 million ha between them. Although not responsible directly for conservation issues, the DoD clearly has an enormous wealth of natural resources on its lands. It does maintain some programmes dealing with monitoring, research, protection and restoration, often in co-ordination with federal, state and local agencies, and in December 1988 it entered into a co-operative agreement with The Nature Conservancy. The DoD employs over 300 professional resource managers, and a number of military personnel who are assigned natural resource functions.
Another important and extremely influential body is the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which was established in 1971 as an independent agency of the government. Although not specifically responsible for any categories of protected area, the EPA has considerable powers in the field of pollution control, waste dumping and water control in federal and other lands, which can lead directly to the protection of resources. This is particularly true in relation to wetlands.
The principal authorities relating to wetlands in the US are the US Army Corps of Engineers, the EPA, and the USFWS. Permits are required for most activities relating to wetland use, even on private land, with input from the EPA and the USFWS, and this form of strict control provides some form of protection for all major wetlands.
According to the National Parks and Conservation Association (NPCA), industrialisation and urbanisation are "making islands of ...national parks...impairing natural processes in the larger ecosystems upon which the parks depend". USNPS budgets have failed to keep pace with inflation; combined with a doubling in size of the national parks system over the past 20 years, this has reduced the relative managerial capacity of the NPS to effectively manage properties under its jurisdiction by as much as 20%. Pay has not kept pace with the cost of living for park rangers.
Overall, the backlog of repair, maintenance, preservation, and public health and safety projects in national parks exceeds US$2 billion. There is a US$500 million backlog just for essential monitoring and resource management projects that must be addressed immediately in parks. According to the NPCA, development of credible fund-raising mechanisms for parks worth US$250 million is needed to supplement the US$1.2 billion appropriated annually (Waugh and Perez Gil 1992).
An assessment of the threats reported by units of the NPS was undertaken in 1988 (USNPS, 1988). Twenty-one major issues stemming from the threats were identified. Representative of the threats facing the protected area estate as a whole included: overpopulation of species; impacts to, or loss of, plant and animal species; degradation of resources due to non-native plants and animals; disruptions due to past land practices; disruption of natural fire regimes; degradation of water quality; alteration of water flows or groundwater levels; lack of secure water rights; loss of visibility and biological diversity and damage due to air pollution; and lack of basic data about sites.
The situation described above for the national parks system is probably much worse for state parks, many of which have been forced to close their gates to users as a result of budgetary shortfalls in 1990-91 (Waugh and Perez Gil 1992). The organisational fragmentation present at the federal level is characteristic of the state activities too (Myers and Green 1989). However, many state agencies do have co-operative agreements with such agencies as the BLM and the USFS.
A number of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are responsible for the acquisition and management of protected areas. With a number of these, purchased land is later sold to federal or state protected area authorities, who frequently are unable to buy land at short notice. Many of these NGOs are extremely powerful economically, and also have an influential role politically. Among these The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is eminent.
Since its founding in 1951, TNC has conserved over 2 million ha, much of which has been passed to federal or state agencies. TNC has created a 50-state natural heritage network that sets protection priorities for itself, and which is also used by most states and a growing number of federal agencies. The projected income in 1991 was US$122.8 million. TNC has launched a Last Great Places initiative, aimed at protecting 75 large, landscape level, ecological systems and plans to invest US$1 billion from public and private sources (including grants from the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund) in this enterprise over the next five years.
Also of great importance is the Trust for Public Land which, after TNC, is largest and most active land acquiring agency in the country. Of the other larger citizen groups involved with protected areas ownership or administration, the National Audubon Society, owns or leases a number of sanctuaries. The Society of American Foresters has designated over 500 natural areas. There are several other programmes in private land conservation, notably the Conservation Fund, the Land Trust Alliance, Ducks Unlimited and Trout Unlimited.
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, a non-profit organisation established by Congress in 1984 to foster co-operation, uses funds appropriated by Congress as seed money for partnerships in challenge grants to be matched by private-sector institutions. The foundation has supported more than 120 projects, and spent US$31.5 million on habitat protection and restoration in co-operation with the USFWS and other organisations. The National Parks Foundation is a similar body, established by the US government.
The dominant land form in the Gulf State region is the Gulf Atlantic Plain, which broadens out from a narrow coastal plain along the east coast to a much wider zone through Florida, Alabama, Louisiana and Texas. Other landforms present include the Interior Plains in western Texas, and the southern extent of the Appalachian Highlands (maximum elevations of 300-600 m) in Alabama. The Mississippi river empties into the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana, forming an extensive wetland system.
Average annual precipitation is highest (150-200 mm) in Southern Florida and along the Mississippi & Alabama coastlines, and steadily drops through Texas to the west (125 mm falling to 25-50 mm). Wetlands form major ecosystems in southern Florida along the coasts and in the Mississippi drainage.
With only minor altitudinal change, vegetation patterns are largely controlled by variations in rainfall and local drainage. Out of the 66 vegetation types identified by Kuchler for the US and Southern Canada (Goodes World Atlas, 17th edition, 1988), 18 are represented in the region. The most widespread include Broadleaf deciduous and needle leaf evergreen forests, Broadleaf and needle leaf deciduous forests, and mixed and open Oak-Hickory stands and grass dominated formations in most of Texas (see below).
VEGETATION TYPES OF THE GULF STATES REGION
Source: Goodes World Atlas, 17th edition, 1988
BROADLEAF EVERGREEN TREES: 1. Mangroves, 3. Greasewood
BROADLEAF EVERGREEN SHRUBS AND DWARF SHRUB FORMS: 7. Lechuguilla-sotol, 9. Sandsage-sandgrass
BROADLEAF DECIDUOUS FOREST: 16. Oak-Ash-Maple,
BROADLEAF DECIDUOUS TREES, NEEDLE LEAF EVERGREENS: 22. Oak Pine,
BROADLEAF DECIDUOUS TREES, MEDIUM HEIGHT GRASS IN PATCHES: 25. Oak hickory bluestem
BROADLEAF DECIDUOUS TREES, NEEDLE LEAF DECIDUOUS TREES: 26. Bay trees, bald cypress, 27. Tupelo gum bald cypress
NEEDLE LEAF EVERGREEN TREES: 34. Pine, 35. Pine juniper
NEEDLE LEAF EVERGREEN TREES, NEEDLE LEAF DECIDUOUS TREES: 45. Pine-Bald Cypress
GRASS, LOW: 54. Bluestem, 55. Broom grass - water grass, 56. Marsh grass
GRASS, LOW BROADLEAF DECIDUOUS, SHRUBFORM, IN PATCHES: 60. Bunch grass
GRASS, MEDIUM HEIGHT: 61. Mesquite-grass mesquite
NEEDLE LEAF DECIDUOUS TREES: 65 Bald cypress
The establishment of Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias in 1864 was the first instance of the nation setting aside a natural area through legislation to be protected explicitly for public use. The establishment of Yellowstone 18 years later as a national park under the jurisdiction of federal rather than state authorities was an historic precedent. An upwelling of support for parks followed the Yellowstone experiment, and Congress authorised additional parks in 1890 (Sequoia, General Grant, later incorporated into Kings Canyon, and Yosemite); in 1899 (Mount Rainier); and 1902 (Crater Lake).
The number of land management agencies complicates systematic approaches to protected area conservation. As a result, there is no comprehensive system plan for the United States. The government in general lacks action plans for the completion of protected area systems at the federal level, with the exception of the NOAA, which is authorised by legislation to develop a programme for marine reserves.
All of the federal agencies mentioned undertake some regular form of inventorying and monitoring of the land resources under their control. Most of the lands under NPS jurisdiction have some inventory and/or ongoing monitoring programmes, arranged on a site-by-site basis. The USFWS carries out inventory, monitoring and research activities which provide information for the management of refuge lands; it also carries out other surveys relating to migratory and breeding birds, selected populations of fish stocks, the effects of pesticides and toxic chemicals in the environment, and waterfowl and wetlands surveys which form part of the National Wetlands Inventory.
The Forest Service has a comprehensive system of planning, inventorying, mapping and monitoring of its lands, with a large amount of this information stored on a highly developed computer network. Inventories have been compiled for a large proportion of DoD lands, often undertaken in conjunction with local authorities or educational establishments, or with local or national NGOs (Keystone Center 1991).
In order to augment government efforts, NGOs such as the National Parks and Conservation Association have produced their own action plan which covers the National Parks System. Other bodies advocating programmes for protected areas agencies include the Sierra Club, the Wilderness Society (wilderness issues, especially with the Forest Service), Defenders of Wildlife (formed an alliance with the Fish and Wildlife Service) and the American Rivers (National Wild and Scenic Rivers System). The Natural Heritage System organised by TNC, together with the initiatives of other citizens groups, provides a foundation for a scientifically-based interagency planning programme.
The basis for the current National Wilderness Preservation System began with an administrative designation established by the USFS, that of wilderness and wild areas. The first such area to be designated was Gila Wilderness in New Mexico in 1924. All of the former USFS wilderness and wild areas became part of the National Wilderness Preservation System in 1964.
McCloskey (1992) estimates that some 11% of the total area of the US is protected in areas managed in categories equivalent to IUCN categories I-V, with the federal government protecting 9.2% of the territory, and non-federal agencies the remaining 1.8%. Of the non-federal agencies the most important are the state government agencies, although the figure also includes a number of local government protected areas, tribal lands and private protected areas.
This analysis estimates that more than 8 million ha of federal lands are awaiting permanent legal designation mostly land that is already being administered as wilderness by the Forest Service or the BLM. Actually data for the percentage cover, and for the total area covered, by the federal protected estate are to some degree misleading, as they are skewed by the very high proportion of protected land in the western states and Alaska, and by the vast area of protected land in Alaska.
Approximately 2.6 million sq. km., or nearly 30% of the US land area, is owned by the federal government, with the great majority lying in the western half of the country and in Alaska. The remainder of the land lies within state, local or private ownership, and hence can only be added to the federal protected areas network through purchase, lease, exchange or other agreement by federal agencies.
By 1893, the government had reserved 5.25 million ha of forest, and, by 1910, the system of national forests rose to 60 million ha. In 1916 there were 35 national parks and monuments. By 1992 the National Park System included 360 units covering nearly 32.5 million ha; the National Forest System, included over 77 million ha including 154 national forests, 19 national grasslands and 17 land utilisation projects; the National Wildlife Refuge System included 492 national wildlife refuges covering some 35.75 million ha administered by the FWS; National Marine Sanctuaries and the National Estuarine Reserves System, administered by NOAA included eight national marine sanctuaries covering some 3.1 million ha, and 21 national estuarine research reserves.
The national wilderness preservation system consists of 492 wilderness areas (37.3 million ha of which over half is in Alaska). A large proportion of these areas are further protected under the other protection systems listed above (Hendee et al 1990). More than one-third of the Wilderness System (13.1 million ha) is managed by the USFS, including nearly 80% of the wilderness area outside Alaska (CRS 1989). By 1992 some 652,000 ha had been legally designated as wilderness under the National Wilderness Preservation System, comprising 66 units in nine different states.
The National Association of State Park Directors (NASPD) annually publishes data relating to state park systems: in June 1990 there were 2,040 state parks covering 2.98 million ha. These state agencies frequently manage other areas. NASPD (1991) lists over 80 categories, covering forests, natural areas, recreation areas, historic sites, water use areas, environmental education areas and state trails. The total for all these categories (including state parks) is 4,022 sites covering over 4.5 million ha. This is not a comprehensive figure for all state protected areas, given that it only covers sites managed by one agency, and in many states there are likely to be others, e.g. dealing specifically with forestry, or with fish and wildlife, which are not included.
Private protected areas include over 1,300 preserves covering 650,000 ha administered by The Nature Conservancy (Waugh and Perez Gil 1992), the National Audubon Society owns or leases over 100 sanctuaries, covering over 60,000 ha (NAS 1991); Ducks Unlimited administers 161,780 ha of wetlands; the local land trusts across the continent represented in the Land Trust Alliance administer a total of 828,630 ha (McCloskey 1992).
The North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP) is a joint project involving Canada and Mexico, 27 US states, approximately 200 conservation groups and many corporations, in the planning of programmes conserving waterfowl and wetland habitats. A similar programme is in development for international co-operation in the protection of Neotropical migrants.
There are a number of trans-boundary protected areas. A management agreement was under discussion with Mexico concerning the establishment of a 2 million ha border park between the USA and Mexico along the Rio Grande which would incorporate Big Bend national park in the USA.
Waugh and Perez Gil (1992) list the priorities for action in the North American region, most of which could be applied equally to the US. These include: enhancing the capacity to manage protected areas; strengthening the constituency of protected areas; assessing and demonstrating benefits; extending coverage; developing the capacity to protect marine and coastal areas; putting all protected areas on a sound financial footing; strengthening protected areas through development planning; restoring the quality of degraded parks and applying the lessons of science and management.
Other Relevant Information Recreation and tourism is a major element of the protected areas philosophy in the US. Visits to parks increased from six million in 1942 to 72 million in 1960. In 1990 more than 250 million visitors came to national parks, whereas state parks hosted 723 million visitors (NASPD 1991, Waugh and Perez Gil 1992). Huge numbers of visitors in many parks are causing problems of erosion, waste and pollution and general overcrowding and disturbance.
US National Park Service, US Department of Interior, Washington, DC 20240 Tel: (202) 208-1100
US Fish and Wildlife Service, US Department of Interior, Washington, DC 20240 Tel: (202) 208-1100
Bureau of Land Management, US Department of Interior, Washington, DC 20240-9998 Tel: (202) 208-3100
Land Resources Office, US Department of the Interior Bureau of Indian Affairs, Washington, DC 20240 Tel: (202) 208- 4004
Office of Resource Management, Bureau of Reclamation, US Department of the Interior Denver Federal Center, Denver, CO 80224 Tel: (303) 236-2389
Forest Service, US Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC 20240 Tel: (202) 447-6661
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, US Department of Commerce, Washington DC 20230 Tel: (202) 482-6196 Fax: (202) 482-4307
Department of Defence, OASD (PandL)E, The Pentagon, Room 3D-833m, Washington DC 20301-8000 Tel: (703) 695-7820
Tennessee Valley Authority, Muscle Shoals, AL 35660 Tel: (205) 386-2601
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Dahl, T.E. and Johnson, C.E. (1991) Status and Trends of Wetlands in the Coterminous United States, Mid-1970's to Mid-1980's. US Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, Washington, D.C. 28 pp.
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Gattuso, J. (1991) Native America. Insight Guides. Apa Publications (HK) Ltd. 389 pp.
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Hamilton, B. (1989) Unfinished business. Sierra September/October. p.48-p.51, p.106-p.108. Sierra Club, San Francisco.
Hartzog, G.B. (1972a) Part one of the National Park System plan: history. U.S. Department of the Interior, Washington, DC. 164 pp.
Hartzog, G.B. (1972b) Part two of the National Park System plan: natural history. U.S. Department of the Interior, Washington, DC. 140 pp.
Hendee, J.C., Stankey, G.H. and Lucas, R.C. (1990) Wilderness Management. Second Edition, revised. North American Press, Golden, Colorado. 546 pp.
Keystone Center (1991) Final Consensus Report of the Keystone Policy Dialogue on Biological Diversity on Federal Lands. The Keystone Center, Keystone, Colorado. 98 pp.
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McCloskey, M. (1992) Protected areas in the United States: What is the US record? In press. 19 pp.
Myers, P. and Green, S.N. (1989) State Park in a New Era. The Conservation Foundation, Washington.
NFWF (1992) National Park Service. In: FY 1993 Fisheries and Wildlife Assessment. National Fish and Wildlife Foundation. p.1-p.42.
NAS (1991) Wildlife Sanctuaries. National Audubon Society Sanctuary Department, Sharon, Connecticut. 42 pp.
NASPD (1991) Annual Information Exchange, April, 1991. National Association of State Park Directors. 19 pp.
TNC (1975) Preserving our natural heritage. Volume 1. Federal activities. The Nature Conservancy, Washington, DC, published in co-operation with the U.S. Man and the Biosphere Programme, Washington DC. 323 pp.
TNC (1976) Preserving our natural heritage. Volume 2. State activities. The Nature Conservancy, Washington, DC, published in co-operation with the U.S. Man and the Biosphere Programme, Washington DC. 671 pp.
USFS (1977) A Directory of Research Natural Areas on Federal Lands of the United States of America. Federal Committee on Ecological Reserves, Forest Service, US Department of Agriculture. p.5-p.8.
USNPS (1988) Natural Resources Assessment and Action Programme Report. US Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Office of Natural Resources, Washington DC.
Waugh, J.D. and Perez Gil, R. (1992) North America Regional Review. Paper presented to the IVth World Congress on National Parks and Protected Areas Caracas, Venezuela 10-21 February 1992
Wilderness Society (1989) Wilderness America: a vision for the future of the nation's wildlands. The Wilderness Society, Washington DC.
ANNEX I: LEGAL INSTRUMENTS
Definitions of protected area designations, as legislated, together with authorities responsible for their administration.
Title: National Park Service Act, United States Code: Title 16, Chapter 1 (16 USC 1): the National Park System; related acts include Co-operation Agreement Act (16 USC 17)
Date: 25 August 1916 (National Park Service Act); 1946 (Co-operation Agreement Act); 1964 (Land and Water Conservation Fund Act).
Brief description: Contains the authorising legislation, or "Organic Act" for the National Park Service. This law stipulates that "the Service...shall promote and regulate the use of the Federal areas known as national parks, monuments, and reservations. It provides for the establishment of national parks networks with over 11 categories throughout the USA.
The Act of 25 August 1916 (39 Stat. 535) provides for the creation of the US National Parks Service. It has the authority to identify areas within the national parks system which are established by individual acts of Congress.
The Co-operation Agreement Act, 1946 permits large natural areas of land to come into the park system without specific acts of Congress. Eight units of the park system entered through the 1946 Act.
Administrative authorities: National Park Service (NPS) of the US Department of the Interior.
Designations: Three broad categories are placed within the National Park System: natural, recreational and historic. All sites are established by Acts of Congress. The National Parks System as a whole holds two, occasionally contradictory, missions: to provide for public access and enjoyment of natural and historic areas, and to conserve their scenery and natural resources. Within each park, regardless of management category, all lands are classified into a land-use system with flexible zoning and sub-zoning. They are divided into natural zones, historic zones, development zones and special use zones. The natural zone may be sub-divided into wilderness/wilderness study subzone; environmental protection subzone; outstanding natural feature subzone; and natural environment subzone. Exact definitions vary within the different categories of protected area in the System, and there may well be similarities and overlaps between the different categories. The designations under the system include the following:
Natural Sites These include: national park, national monument, national reserve, and national preserve.
Recreation Sites These include: national recreation area, national seashore, national lakeshore, national scenic trail, national river, and national wild and scenic river.
Historic Sites These include: national historic site, national historic park, national battlefield.
Source: US Department of the Interior (1992), TNC (1975)
Title: An Act to establish a National Wilderness Preservation System for the permanent good of the whole people, and for other purposes. Short title: the "Wilderness Act". PL 88-577, 16 USC 1131-1136.
Date: 3 September 1964
Brief description: Federal agencies are authorised and mandated to manage areas of land as wilderness under the Wilderness Act, 1972. Under this Act of Congress, the statute states that the National Wilderness Preservation System was established with major objectives "to secure for the American people of present and future generations the benefits of an enduring resource of wilderness".
The system consists of federally-owned lands designated by Congress as Wilderness areas. All lie within the National Parks System, the National Forest System, the National Wildlife Refuge System, and public lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management. The Wilderness Act does not apply to public or Federal Lands administered by Departments or Agencies other than these.
Administrative authorities: US National Park Service, US Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, US Bureau of Land Management.
Wilderness Area To "be administered for the use and enjoyment of the American people in such manner as will leave them unimpaired for future use and enjoyment as wilderness, and so as to provide for the protection of these areas, the preservation of their wilderness character, and for the gathering and dissemination of information regarding their use and enjoyment as wilderness."
Wilderness as "in contrast with those areas where Man and his own works dominate the landscape, is hereby recognised as an area where the earth and its community of life are untrammelled by Man, where Man himself is a visitor who does not remain." An area of wilderness is further defined to mean in this chapter an area of undeveloped federal land retaining its primeval character and influence, without permanent improvements or human habitation, which is protected and managed so as to preserve its natural conditions and which:
generally appears to have been affected primarily by the forces of nature, with the imprint of Man's work substantially unnoticeable;
has outstanding opportunities for solitude or a primitive and unconfined type of recreation;
covers at least 5,000 acres (2023.4 ha) of land or is of sufficient size as to make practicable its preservation and use in an unimpaired condition;
may also contain ecological, geological, or other features of scientific, educational, scenic, or historical value."
Source: US Department of Interior (1992), TNC (1975).
Title: Forest Reserves Act, often referred to as the Creative Act, 1891, United States Code: Title 16. Chapter 2 (16 USC 2); Organic Administration Act (16 USC 475); Weeks Law; Resources Planning Act: National Forest System; National Forest Management Act
Date: May 1891 (Forest Reserve Act/Creative Act); 4 June 1897 (Organic Administration Act); 1905 (US Forest Service establishment); 1911 (Weeks Law); Resources Planning Act, 1974; National Forest Management Act, 1976.
Brief description: In 1891 Congress passed the Forest Reserve Act (Creative Act), giving the President authority to withdraw portions of the public domain and designate them as forest reservations. A system of administration of the reserves was set forth in the Organic Administration Act, 1897. The US Forest Service (USFS) was established in 1905. Authority for the USFS is contained in Chapter 2 of Title 16, US Codes, that grants the Secretary of Agriculture authority to administer the nation's forest reserves.
The Resources Planning Act, 1974 incorporated the term "National Forest System" into the statutes. Under the System the USFS has responsibility for national forests, national grasslands and land utilisation projects. The resources of these lands are managed according to the Multiple Use-Sustained Yield Act, 1960. The rules which require the integration of land and resource planning can be found in 36 CFR Part 219, the implementing regulations for the National Forest Management Act.
Administrative authorities: US Forest Service of the US Department of Agriculture.
National Forest The laws contained in Chapter 2 specify that each Forest Service unit develop an integrated management plan. Chapter 36 of the same Code requires the USFS to develop guidelines for multiple-use management of reserves under its authority that "require the identification of the suitability of lands for resource management; provide for obtaining inventory data on the various renewable resources, and soil and water, including pertinent maps, graphic material, and explanatory aids; and provide for methods to identify special conditions or situations involving hazards to the various resources and their relationship to alternative activities."
The law makes provision for land management plans that: "ensure consideration of the economic and environmental aspects of various systems of renewable resource management, including the related systems of silviculture and protection of forest resources, to provide for outdoor recreation (including wilderness), range, timber, watershed, wildlife, and fish; provide for diversity of plant and animal communities based on the suitability and capability of the specific land area in order to meet overall multiple-use objectives, and within the multiple-use objectives of a land management plan adopted pursuant to this section, provide, where appropriate, to the degree practicable, for steps to be taken to preserve the diversity of tree species similar to that existing in the region controlled by the plan; (and) ensure research and evaluation (based on continuous monitoring and assessment in the field) of the effects of each management system to the end that it will not produce substantial and permanent impairment of the productivity of the land."
Under the Organic Administration Act (36 CFR 294) areas worthy of special classification within the National Forest, are classed as special interest areas, and listed as the following:
Scenic Area place of outstanding beauty which requires special management to preserve its qualities;
Palaeontological Area containing relict palaeontological specimens of fauna and flora;
Geological Area unit of land with outstanding formations or unique geological features of the earth's development, including caves and fossils;
Botanical Area contains specimens or group exhibits of plants, plant groups and plant communities which are significant for a variety of reasons;
Zoological Area contains authentic, significant and interesting evidence of American natural heritage.
Source: US Department of Agriculture (1992), TNC (1975).
Title: Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, United States Code, Title 16. Chapter 28.
Date: 2 October 1968
Brief description: The National Wild and Scenic Rivers System was authorised by Congress in 1968. This statute, found in Title 16, US Code, Chapter 28 declares as national policy "that certain selected rivers of the Nation which, with their immediate environments, possess outstandingly remarkable scenic, recreational, geologic, fish and wildlife, historic, cultural, or other similar values, shall be preserved in free-flowing condition, and that they and their immediate environments shall be protected for the benefit and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Congress declares that the established national policy of dam and other construction at appropriate sections of the rivers of the United States needs to be complemented by a policy that would preserve other selected rivers or sections thereof in their free-flowing condition to protect the water quality of such rivers and to fulfil other vital national conservation purposes."
Administrative authorities: Relevant federal authorities.
National Wild and Scenic River The system shall comprise rivers that are designated by Act of Congress or designated by a legislature of the state(s) through which they flow. Every wild scenic or recreational river in its free-flowing condition, or upon restoration to this condition, shall be considered eligible for inclusion in the national wild and scenic rivers system and if included, shall be classified, designated, and administered as one of the following:
Wild River Area those rivers or sections of rivers that are free of impoundments and generally inaccessible except by trail, with watersheds or shorelines essentially primitive and waters unpolluted. These represent vestiges of primitive America.
Scenic River Area those rivers or sections of rivers that are free of impoundments, with shorelines and watersheds still largely primitive and shorelines largely undeveloped, but accessible in places by roads.
Recreational River Area those rivers or sections of rivers that are readily accessible by road or railroad, that may have some development along their shorelines, and that may have undergone some impoundment or diversion in the past.
Source: TNC (1975)
Title: National Marine Sanctuary Programme: Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act of 1972 (PL 92-532), as amended, 16 USC 1431 et seq. (authorisation); 15 CFR 922 (programme regulations). National estuarine research reserve system: Section 315 of the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972 (PL 92-583), as amended, 16 USC 1451 et seq. (authorisation); 15 CFR 921 (programme regulations).
Brief description: Congress authorises the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to establish and maintain two types of protected areas: national marine sanctuary and national estuarine research reserve. The Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act authorises the Secretary of Commerce to designate ocean waters as marine sanctuaries.
Administrative authorities: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
National Marine Sanctuary Acknowledging that the US has directed most protected area efforts towards the terrestrial estate, the statutes reflected in this code affirm that "certain areas of the marine environment" possess qualities of "conservation, recreational, ecological, historical, research, educational, or aesthetic qualities which give them special national significance." The Code characterises this programme as serving "to enhance public awareness, understanding, appreciation, and wise use of the marine environment."
National Estuarine Research Reserves System Title 15 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Chapter IX, provides regulations for the National Estuarine Reserve Research System. The mission of the National Estuarine Reserve Research System, according to the Regulations, "is the establishment and management, through Federal-State co-operation, of a national system of estuarine research reserves representative of the various regions and estuarine types in the United States."
Estuarine Research Reserve established to provide opportunities for long-term research, education, and interpretation and:
to ensure a stable environment for research through long-term protection of estuarine reserve resources;
address coastal management issues identified as significant through co-ordinated estuarine research within the System;
enhance public awareness and understanding of the estuarine environment and provide suitable opportunities for public education and interpretation;
promote federal, state, public and private use of one or more reserves within the System when such entities conduct estuarine research; and
conduct and co-ordinate estuarine research within the System, gathering and making available information necessary for improved understanding and management of estuarine areas."
Under the provisions of the Act an area may be designated as an estuarine reserve only if the area is a representative estuarine ecosystem that is suitable for long-term research.
Source: NOAA (1992) TNC (1975)
Title: National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act: National Wildlife Refuge System. Incorporates the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 USC 703-711); Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp Act, 1934; Migratory Bird Convention Act, 1929; Land and Water Conservation Fund Act, Wilderness Act, 1964; Endangered Species Act, 1973 (revised 1982, supplemented in the International Environmental Protection Act, 1983); Fish and Wildlife Co-ordination Act, 1934 (amended 1958); Fish and Wildlife Improvement Act, 1978
Date: 1966 (National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act)
Brief description: Expresses policy and provides guidelines for operating the system. The Refuge Recreation Act, 1962 authorises the purchase of adjacent lands to serve as recreational areas and as buffer areas to the refuges (funds for the purchase of such lands under the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act, 1965). The Wilderness Act, 1964 and the Endangered Species Act, 1973 have some bearing on the system. The Fish and Wildlife Co-ordination Act, 1934 (amended 1958) authorises Federal water resource agencies to acquire lands in connection with water resource projects specifically for the conservation and enhancement of fish and wildlife, and requires consultation with the FWS and the wildlife agency of the state concerned.
Administrative authorities: Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), US Department of the Interior.
Designations: Within the Refuge System are a series of the following different categories as defined in the Code of Federal Regulations (Title 50, Chapter 1, Section 25): Migratory Bird (Waterfowl) Areas; Migratory Bird (General) Areas; Big Game Areas, National Game Ranges; National Wildlife Ranges and Waterfowl Production Areas.
National Wildlife Refuge maintained for the primary purpose of developing a national programme of wildlife and ecological conservation and rehabilitation. These refuges are established for the restoration, preservation, development and management of wildlife and wildlands habitat; for the protection and preservation of endangered or threatened species and their habitat; and for the management of wildlife and wildlands to obtain the maximum benefits from these resources.
Supplementary designations may be applied to parts of, or entire, refuges. These include wilderness areas, research natural areas, wild and scenic rivers, natural landmarks, international shorebird reserves.
The FWS also has obligations for wildlife management areas or co-ordination areas under co-operative agreements with federal, state, local and private agencies and organisations.
Source: TNC (1975)
Title: Department of Defence, United States Code, Title 16
Brief description: The organic act relating to Department of Defence (DoD) land. Federal statutes (Title 16, US Code) authorise the Secretary of Defence "to carry out a programme of planning for, and the development, maintenance, and co-ordination of wildlife, fish and game conservation and rehabilitation in each military reservation in accordance with a co-operative plan mutually agreed upon by the Secretary of Defence, the Secretary of the Interior, and the appropriate State agency designated by the state in which the reservation is located."
Administrative authorities: Department of Defence
Military Reservation Co-operative plans under this authority are intended to include "fish and wildlife habitat improvements or modifications...range rehabilitation where necessary for support of wildlife,...control of off-road vehicle traffic, and...specific habitat improvement projects and related activities and adequate protection for species of fish, wildlife, and plants considered threatened or endangered." Co-operative plans are to be "reviewed as to operation and effect by the parties thereto on a regular basis, but not less often than every 5 years, . . . shall, if a multi-use natural resources management plan is applicable to the military reservation, be treated as the exclusive component of that management plan with respect to wildlife, fish, and game conservation and rehabilitation."
The statute continues, "the Secretary of each military department shall manage the natural resources of each military reservation with the United States that is under the jurisdiction of the Secretary ... so as to provide for sustained multipurpose uses of those resources; and to provide the public access that is necessary or appropriate for those uses; to the extent that those uses and that access are not inconsistent with military mission of the reservation."
Source: TNC (1976)
Title: The National Natural Landmarks Programme.
Brief description: An administrative rather than a legal designation, national natural landmarks are designated on any areas of land outside the national park system. Participation in the scheme by private landowners is entirely voluntary. Guidelines concerning the objectives of this designation are given in the Federal Register Volume 40, No.87, 5 May, 1975, p.19504.
Administrative authorities: National Parks Service, US Department of the Interior.
National Natural Landmark Sites must lie outside land already administered by the National Park Service. They are designated if they are of national significance in illustrating the diversity of the country's natural history. Sites are entered on the National Registry of Natural Landmarks this is voluntary and does not change ownership. Inclusion "is intended to: 1) encourage the preservation of sites illustrating the geological and ecological character of the US; 2) enhance the educational and scientific value of sites thus preserved; 3) strengthen cultural appreciation of natural history; and 4) foster a wider interest and concern in the Nation's natural heritage".
Source: TNC (1976)
Title: The Research Natural Areas Programme
Date: No information
Brief description: An administrative rather than a legal designation, research natural areas are designated by any one of eight co-operating federal agencies with the aim of preserving a representative array of all significant natural ecosystems and providing for their research.
Administrative authorities: Forest Service in the US Department of Agriculture; Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service and National Parks Service in the US Department of the Interior; Department of Defence; Energy Research and Development Administration; Tennessee Valley Authority.
Research Natural Area to preserve an array of all significant natural ecosystems and their inherent processes as baseline areas, and to obtain from them, through research and education, information concerning the natural systems, their components and comparisons with representative manipulated systems. Restrictions and regulations vary depending on the administrative agency and the specific site, but generally sites are areas of minimal human intervention and activities such as logging, grazing burning or restocking are prohibited. Hunting, fishing and trapping, as well as camping, swimming and hiking are generally not encouraged. Research is encouraged, although generally it must be non-destructive in character.
Source: USFS (1977)
ANNEX II: USA (Gulf Coast States) PROTECTED AREAS LIST
|Name of area||IUCN & National Mgmt. Categories||Presence of Marine or Coastal Zones||Area
|Alexander Springs (FL)||II||W||3,116||1984|
|Big Gum Swamp (FL)||II||W||5,504||1984|
|Billies Bay (FL)||II||W||1,263||1984|
|Bradwell Bay (FL)||II||W||9,477||1974|
|Caprock Canyon (TX)||I||5,526||not avail.|
|Florida Keys (FL)||II||YES||2,508||1975|
|Galveston Island (TX)||I||786||not avail.|
|Hale Ranch (TX)||I||1,982||not avail.|
|Hill Country Natural Area Reserve (TX)||I||1,099||not avail.|
|JN Ding Darling (FL)||I||1,060||1976|
|Juniper Prairie (FL)||II||W||5,366||1984|
|Little Lake George (FL)||II||W||1,012||1984|
|Mud Swamp/New River (FL)||II||W||3,157||1984|
|St. Marks (FL)||I||7,021||1975|
|Big Bend (TX)||II||NP||286,572||1944|
|Big Cypress (FL)||II||PN||YES||21,198||1974|
|Big Gum Swamp||II||5,504||1984|
|Big Slough (TX)||II||W||1,450||1984|
|Black Creek (MISS)||II||W||2,028||1984|
|Guadalupe Mountains (TX)||II||NP||31,364||1972|
|Indian Mounds (TX)||II||W||4,418||1984|
|Kisatchie Hills (LA)||II||W||3,521||1980|
|Little Lake Creek (TX)||II||W||1,542||1984|
|Turkey Hill (TX)||II||W||2,139||1984|
|Upland Island (TX)||II||W||5,027||1984|
|Fort Jefferson (FL)||III||NM||YES||19,083||1935|
|Fort Matanzas National Monument||III||120||1924|
|Grand Cote (LA)||IV||2,459||not avail.|
|Arthur R. Mitchell Loxahatchee (FL)||IV||NWR||58,994||1951|
|Atchafalaya (LA)||IV||NWR||6,178||not avail.|
|Attwater's Prairie Chicken (TX)||IV||NWR||3,234||1972|
|Bayou Cocodrie (LA)||IV||1,996||not avail.|
|Big Boggy (TX)||IV||NWR||YES||1,770||not avail.|
|Bogue Chitto (LA)||IV||NWR||11,602||not avail.|
|Bogue Chitto (MISS)||IV||NWR||2,755||not avail.|
|Bon Secour (AL)||IV||NWR||YES||1,819||not avail.|
|Brazoria (TX)||IV||NWR||YES||4,941||not avail.|
|Buffalo Lake (TX)||IV||NWR||3,104||not avail.|
|Cameron Prairie||IV||3,893||not avail.|
|Cape Romano Aquatic Reserve (FL)||IV||YES||6,700||1991|
|Catahoula (LA)||IV||NWR||2,150||not avail.|
|Charlotte Harbor Preserve (FL)||IV||YES||22,918||1982|
|Chassahowitzka (FL)||IVN||WR||YES||12,317||not avail.|
|Chicot (LA)||IV||2,592||not avail.|
|Choctaw (AL)||IV||NWR||1,708||not avail.|
|Crocodile Lake (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||1,619||not avail.|
|D'Arbonne (LA)||IV||NWR||7,055||not avail.|
|Dahomey (TX)||IV||1,072||not avail.|
|Eufaula (AL)||IV||NWR||3,211||not avail.|
|Florida Panther (FL)||IV||9,461||not avail.|
|Fountainbleau (LA)||IV||1,093||not avail.|
|Great White Heron (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||2,998||1938|
|Indian River Area Aquatic Preserves (FL)||IV||YES||25,890||1986|
|J.N. "Ding" Darling (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||2,037||1945|
|Lacassine (LA)||IV||NWR||13,203||not avail.|
|Laguna Atascosa (TX)||IV||NWR||YES||18,301||not avail.|
|Lake Woodruff (FL)||IV||NWR||7,494||1964|
|Little Sandy||IV||1,539||not avail.|
|Lower Rio Grande Valley (TX)||IV||NWR||10,662||not avail.|
|Lower Suwannee (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||15,856||not avail.|
|McFaddin (TX)||IV||NWR||17,397||not avail.|
|Merritt Island (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||56,356||not avail.|
|Mississippi Sandhill Crane (MISS)||IV||NWR||7,692||1974|
|Moody (TX)||IV||NWR||1,424||not avail.|
|Morgan Brake (MISS)||IV||NWR||1,324||not avail.|
|Muleshoe (TX)||IV||NWR||2,352||not avail.|
|National Key Deer (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||3,068||not avail.|
|Panther Swamp (MISS)||IV||NWR||10,993||not avail.|
|Paynes Prairie State Reserve (FL)||IV||5,656||1961|
|Pelican Island (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||1,780||not avail.|
|Pinellas Country Aquatic Preserve (FL)||IV||YES||1,926||1982|
|Rookery Bay (FL)||IV||NMS||YES||8,585||1991|
|Sabine (LA)||IV||NWR||YES||56,472||not avail.|
|San Bernard (TX)||IV||NWR||YES||9,904||1967|
|St. Catherines Creek||IV||5,275||not avail.|
|St. Johns (FL)||IV||NWR||2,533||not avail.|
|St. Mark's (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||26,399||1931|
|St. Martins Marsh Aquatic Preserve (FL)||IV||1,510||1984|
|St. Vincent (FL)||IV||NWR||YES||31,650||1968|
|Tallahatchie (AL)||IV||1,577||not avail.|
|Tensas River (LA)||IV||NWR||22,259||not avail.|
|Terra Ceia Aquatic Preserve (FL)||IV||YES||1,383||1982|
|Texas Point (TX)||IV||NWR||YES||3,626||not avail.|
|Upper Ouachita (LA)||IV||NWR||8,460||1978|
|Weeks Bay (AL)||IV||NERR||YES||1,483||1986|
|Wheeler (AL)||IV||NWR||13,839||not avail.|
|Yazoo (MISS)||IV||NWR||5,051||not avail.|
|Bastrop (TX)||V||1,418||not avail.|
|Big Thicket (TX)||V||PN||34,712||1974|
|Caledesi Island (FL)||V||YES||116||1966|
|Canaveral National Seashore (FL)||V||NS||YES||23,321||1975|
|Chea State Park (AL)||V||1,133||1933|
|De Soto State Park (AL)||V||2,051||1935|
|Fakahatchee Strand State Preserve (FL)||V||YES||3,610||1974|
|Gulf Islands (FL) NS||V||NS||YES||57,084||1971|
|Jean Lafitte (LA)||V||NHP||3,480||1978|
|Joe Wheeler (AL)||V||NWR||1,032||1949|
|John Pennekamp Coral Reef (FL)||V||YES||3,359||1959|
|Key Largo Coral Reef (FL)||V||NMS||YES||32,388||1975|
|Lake Guntersville (AL)||V||NS||2,391||1947|
|Lake Mineral Wells (TX)||V||1,155||not avail.|
|Long Key (FL)||V||YES||187||1961|
|Looe Key (FL)||V||NMS||YES||1,554||1981|
|Monahans Sand Hills (TX)||V||1,554||not avail.|
|Mustang Island (TX)||V||1,499||1964|
|Natchez State Park (MISS)||V||1,391||1979|
|Natchez Trace Parkway (AL)||VP||18,300||1938|
|Oak Mountain (AL)||VNS||4,023||1935|
|Oleta River (FL)||V||162||1980|
|Padre Island National Seashore (TX)||VNS||YES||54,196||1968|
|Palo Duro Canyon (TX)||V||6,638||not avail.|
|Paynes Prairie (FL)||V||7,041||not avail.|
|Pedernales Falls (TX)||V||1,967||not avail.|
|Rio Grande N. Scenic River (TX)||V||NSR||3,885||1978|
|Sea Rim (TX)||V||6,115||not avail.|
|Seminole Necklace (FL)||V||2,569||not avail.|
|Shadow Mountain (TX)||V||NRA||7,369||1952|
|South Llano River (TX)||V||1,065||not avail.|
|Pelican Island (FL)||RW||YES||1,908||1993|
|Cache-Lower White Rivers||RW||145690||1989|
|WORLD HERITAGE SITES|
|Everglades National Park (FL)||X||NP||YES||585,867||1979|
|Big Bend National Park (TX)||IX||283,247||1976|
|Big Thicket National Preserve (TX)||IX||34,217||1981|
|Central Gulf Coastal Plain||IX||72,964||1983|
|Everglades National Park (Ft. Jefferson) (FL)||IX||YES||585,867||1976|
RW Ramsar Site NS National Seashore
W Wilderness Area NWR National Wildlife Refuge
NP National Park NMS National Marine Sanctuaries
NRA National Recreation Area NERR National Estuarine Research Reserve
P Parkway PN National Preserve
NM National Monument NHP National Historic Park
NSR National Scenic River
** Wilderness areas (category I) have only been listed where they do not overlap with other categories of protected area included in this list. There are a large number of other wilderness areas which lie within national parks, national monuments, national wildlife refuges and other categories.
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