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About the Maine Natural Areas Program
The Maine Natural Areas Program facilitates conservation of Maine’s biodiversity by providing comprehensive information and scientific expertise on at-risk species, natural ecosystems, wildlife habitats, ecological reserves, and invasive plants to landowners, developers, resource managers, towns, and other conservation partners. The Program's success relies upon consistent and objective methods to collect, organize, and interpret information.
The Maine Natural Areas Program (MNAP) is within the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. With landowner permission, MNAP 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.
MNAP maintains a cross-referenced spatial data management system with current and historical information about natural features from across Maine. This information is shared with other state agencies, town planners, developers, land trusts, and other groups interested in natural resource and conservation planning.
MNAP is part of NatureServe, an award-winning network of scientists, information technology experts, and other professionals in the United States and Canada that maintains the most comprehensive database on at-risk species and ecosystems in North America. This scientific data aids everyone making natural resource decisions—including governments, conservation organizations, corporations, landowners, and the scientific community—so they can take biodiversity into consideration to better focus conservation actions and more responsibly manage natural resources.
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.
Maine Natural Areas Program's authorizing legislation.
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