About the Maine Natural Areas Program

The Maine Natural Areas Program (MNAP), within the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, serves Maine's citizens as the most comprehensive source on the State's important natural features. With landowner permission, the Program inventories lands that support rare and endangered plants, rare natural communities and ecosystems, and outstanding examples of more common natural communities and ecosystems. MNAP also provides objective and comprehensive information to equip decision-makers with the necessary tools to make informed and responsible decisions.

Photo: Aerial View of Deboullie Lakes region

MNAP continues a strong commitment to conserving natural areas. The Program maintains a cross-referenced data management system containing current and historical information about natural features from across Maine. This information is shared with other state agencies, town planners, land trusts, and other groups interested in natural resource and conservation planning.

MNAP is part of an international network of natural heritage programs overseen by NatureServe. This network contributes important information on Maine's native plant and animal species and natural communities and ecosystems with ranges that extend beyond Maine's borders. In addition, MNAP works closely with the Maine Field Office of The Nature Conservancy and the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife on conservation efforts.

Chamberlain Lake, view of Baxter Mountain

Mission

MNAP's mission is to ensure the maintenance of Maine's natural heritage for the benefit of present and future generations. MNAP facilitates informed decision-making in development planning, conservation, and natural resources management. The Program's success relies upon consistent and objective methods to collect, organize, and interpret information.

Legislation

Maine Natural Areas Program's authorizing legislation.


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