Colorado Parks and Wildlife celebrates 40 years of the Colorado Natural Areas Program
This statewide program recognizes and works to conserve locations that have one or more unique natural features important to Colorado. Natural areas are found on both public or private lands, and are officially designated through voluntary conservation agreements with landowners.
“I like to say that CNAP is a small program with a big mission,” said Raquel Wertsbaugh, Colorado Natural Areas Program Coordinator. “I’m thankful that these incredibly special places in our state are supported by CNAP not only to ensure the longevity of the natural features themselves but for future generations to learn from and be inspired by.”
Established by statute in 1977, the Colorado Natural Areas Program is a statewide program focused on the recognition and protection of areas that contain at least one unique or high-quality natural feature of statewide significance.
The Colorado Natural Areas Program, working with interested landowners and dedicated volunteers, helps to conserve Colorado’s best places well into the future. To date, more than 250 rare, threatened or endangered species and communities are monitored and cooperatively protected at 95 designated sites in Colorado, with more in the works. Natural areas are found on public or private land and are designated through land management agreements with landowners. CNAP is the only statewide program within Colorado that provides a system for recognizing these unique natural places.