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The Virginia Natural Heritage Program

Since 1989, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation has dedicated its natural heritage staff to the identification, protection, and stewardship of Virginia's biodiversity. To date, inventory has identified over 1800 conservation sites containing one or more rare species or communities. With over 45 employees dedicated to the preservation and stewardship of Virginia's natural heritage resources, the Division has available the skills of biologists, ecologists, zoologists, conservation planners, environmental resource managers, landscape architects, and data managers.

In 1994, and again in 2006 The Virginia Natural Heritage Program was recognized by NatureServe as the outstanding natural heritage program in the western hemisphere.

For more information on each of the sections within the heritage program, click on the links to the right:


photo staff in field

GIS map of VA
Information Management

photo of aerial photo w/ project location
Environmental Review

Royal terns at Wreck Island NAP
Natural Area Protection

photo of burn at Chub Sandhill NAP