|For Immediate Release:
||April 16, 2013|
|Contact(s):||Mike Litterst, (202) 513-0354|
|Two New National Natural Landmarks Designated
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Park Service today announced the designation of two new national natural landmarks. The two landmarks – one in southern Georgia and one in northeastern Oregon – were designated on April 3 by the U.S. Department of the Interior and are outstanding examples of two ecosystems that have nearly vanished in the U.S.
The new national natural landmarks are the Wade Tract Preserve in Thomas County, Georgia, and Zumwalt Prairie in Wallowa County, Oregon. Each site has been identified and evaluated through a rigorous process - including a scientific evaluation and public comment period - to formally acknowledge their outstanding biological or geological features.
“The National Natural Landmark Program encourages preservation of our nation’s natural heritage as well as enhances our scientific understanding of these unique places,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “By designating these remarkable sites as national natural landmarks, we recognize two extraordinary examples of landscapes in America that were commonplace at one time, but are now rarely seen intact.”
There are now 596 national natural landmarks with the addition of:
In addition to the new designations, an expansion to the boundary of Garden Park Fossil Area National Natural Landmark was also approved. The expanded designation includes five significant quarries highlighting discoveries that include the three most complete Stegosaurus skeletons ever found. Garden Park Fossil Area is located in Fremont County, Colorado, and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management. It is among the most important and diverse Late Jurassic age fossil sites in North America.
Administered by the National Park Service, the National Natural Landmarks Program http://www.nature.nps.gov/nnl/ was established in 1962. It is the only natural areas program of national scope to encourage the preservation of the best remaining examples of the nation’s biological and geological features in both public and private ownership. The federal designation imposes no new land use restrictions that were not in effect prior to designation.