State Natural Area Programs


The Natural Areas Association was founded by people working in the first state and private natural areas programs in the country.

Today, our members include natural lands managers, natural resource managers, land trust staff and volunteers, biologists, ecologists, researchers, policy specialists, educators, students, and anyone with an active interest in environmental conservation and natural areas stewardship. But we continue to enjoy significant support and leadership from those working in state natural areas programs–and their concerns are still central to our mission.

Cypress Pond at Allred Lake Natural Area, Missouri.
Courtesy Missouri Department of Conservation.

We have two specific programs for those in state natural areas programs:
  • State Natural Areas Roundtable

  • State Natural Areas Programs Report

State Natural Areas Roundtable

The Natural Areas Association hosted the first State Natural Areas Roundtable (SNAR) at the 2006 Natural Areas Conference in Flagstaff, Arizona. The SNAR was conceived of as a dedicated forum for state natural area program managers, and has been an important part of every conference since.

These meetings provide a place for information exchange and updates, including guidance on general planning and management issues, acquisition strategies and successes, and collective problem-solving. All state natural area and natural heritage network professionals are invited to participate.

State Natural Areas Programs Report

The NAA published the first “Status of State Natural Area Programs” report in 2005, and has updated it regularly since then. This report provides an overview of the nation’s State Natural Area Programs (SNAPs), and is a baseline for comparison of current programs. The report is intended to foster networking among states’ natural area program staff as well as to document opportunities to expand, improve, or initiate state natural area programs.

The most recent report, for 2015, contains survey results that include statistics on goals, statutes, natural area dedications and designations, land ownership types, and average acreage.

To update your state’s natural areas program profile, please contact us.


Join the people who protect and manage our natural areas.