While the spotlight of our most cherished public lands mostly revolves around the 400+ National Parks, we would be doing the remaining public and state lands a huge injustice by not recognizing their overwhelming merit in the make-up of America’s esteemed wilderness and heritage. Wild Tribute loves them all the same! This recognition includes the federal and state agencies that administer their well-being along with the incredible swath of organizations that help manage and ensure these lands are preserved and enjoyed by the current and future generations to come.
The National Park Service (NPS) preserves the natural and cultural resources and values of the national park system for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. The National Park System of the United States comprises 400+ areas covering more than 84 million acres in 50 States, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, Saipan, and the Virgin Islands. The Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages 264 million surface acres of public lands located primarily in the 12 western states, including Alaska. The agency manages an additional 300 million acres of below ground mineral estate located throughout the country. Originally, these lands were valued principally for the commodities extracted from them. Today, the public also prizes them for their recreational opportunities and the natural, historical, and cultural resources they contain.
The Forest Service (FS) administers programs for applying sound conservation and utilization practices to natural resources of the national forests and grasslands, for promoting these practices on all forest lands through cooperation with states and private landowners, and for carrying out extensive forest and range research.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) is primarily responsible for fish, wildlife, and plant conservation. The Service helps protect a healthy environment for people, fish, and wildlife, and helps Americans conserve and enjoy the outdoors and our living treasures. Major responsibilities include migratory birds, endangered species, certain marine mammals, and freshwater/anadromous fish.
America’s State Parks helps capture the collective strength and importance of the great park systems developed in the 50 states. With over 7,000 units and more than 720 million visits, America’s State Parks works to enhance the American quality of life.
*Agency information above provided by The Wildlife Society