skip to main content | skip to footer
N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Natural Heritage Program - Conservation

Natural Heritage Program

Conservation

The Natural Heritage Program Conservation section works with landowners, local, state and federal agencies, non-profit organizations, and corporations to conserve the significant natural areas of the state, through short- and long-term agreements, conservation planning and land management assistance.

Activities that support this effort include:

Conservation Incentives
The Conservation Incentives Program assists landowners and conservation organizations with N.C. Conservation Tax Credits and information about other state and federal conservation incentive programs.
Conservation Planning Tool
The North Carolina Conservation Planning Tool provides a valuable means for synthesizing and sharing the priorities of the state’s conservation agencies and organizations with planners in government and the private sector to inform decisions and guide conservation efforts statewide. 
Dedicated Nature Preserves
Publicly- and privately-owned Significant Natural Heritage Areas can be dedicated as State Nature Preserves to establish a lasting conservation commitment.
Ecosystem Assessment
The Natural Heritage Program, with input from other conservation agencies, has evaluated the likely effects of climate change on North Carolina's ecosystems and rare species.
Element Occurrences
The Natural Heritage Program collects information on occurrences of rare plants and animals, exemplary or unique natural communities, and important animal assemblages (e.g., heronries and colonial waterbird nesting sites). Collectively, these plants, animals, natural communities and animal assemblages are referred to as "elements of natural diversity" or simply as "elements." Specific occurrences of these elements are referred to as "element occurrences."
Freshwater Ecosystems
The Natural Heritage Program's aquatic ecologists combine skill in the inventory of freshwater natural areas with experience in conservation actions to address issues related to the conservation of freshwater ecosystems in North Carolina.
Managed Areas
The Natural Heritage Program maintains a database and GIS maps of all the nature preserves within North Carolina. These are known as "Managed Areas" or "Protected Areas."
Registered Heritage Areas
Voluntary agreements protect outstanding examples of the natural diversity and establish reserves for populations of endangered, threatened, rare or otherwise important species of plants and animals.
Natural Areas
The North Carolina Natural Heritage Program has identified more than 2,500 natural areas statewide. A NHP natural area is an area of land or water identified by the NHP as being important for conservation of the state's biodiversity.
Stewardship Program
The Stewardship Program provides monitoring and management of conservation easements and lands held by the N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources for stream and wetland mitigation.
Support for Land Conservation
The Natural Heritage Program works with many partners, including state and federal conservation agencies, national conservation groups, and the land trust community, to protect these ecologically significant areas.
Web Content Display Web Content Display
61587 FEEDBACK

Your input is valuable to us. Please send us your feedback.

What type of feedback would you like to send?*

Ask a Question Report a Problem Have a Concern Make a Comment

(If you would like us to respond please include your phone or e-mail.)

Your Question has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Problem has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Concern has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Comment has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

*If you are a DENR employee with an I.T. issue, please submit a DOTS ticket.