Natural Area Registry

This page last updated: 09/24/2014
Metadata created using Minnesota Geographic Metadata Guidelines


Go to Section:
1. Overview
2. Data Quality
3. Data Organization
4. Coordinate System
5. Attributes
6. Distribution - Get Data
7. Metadata Reference

Section 1 Overview
Originator Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) - Division of Ecological and Water Resources, Scientific & Natural Areas (SNA) Program
Title Natural Area Registry
Abstract Natural Area Registry (NAR) Sites layer version supporting SNA Work Planning application.

natural_area-registry-sites_boundaries: A polygon database delineated on and digitized from 1:24,000 U.S.G.S. quad maps of Minnesota Natural Area Registry (NARs). (The following text is partially excerpted from: Scientific and Natural Area (SNA) Program Administrative Handbook, Draft EWR Divisional Directive 103, Natural Area Registry, MN DNR, Scientific and Natural Areas Program.)

A Natural Area Registry (NAR) Site is a qualifying natural area managed by a government entity (a unit of the federal, state, or local government, (identified as "Landowner", or another Division within DNR, identified as "Primary Administrator") that is covered by a NAR Agreement by which the site becomes part of the Natural Area Registry. Sites in this program are managed by various public agencies with management recommendations provided by the Scientific and Natural Areas program and Regional Ecologist. NARs are established through the use of Natural Area Registry (NAR) Agreements which are non-binding written agreements between the Division of Ecological and Water Resources (EWR) and another governmental entity. The NAR Agreement identifies the site, explains its significance, describes a proposed management direction, and states that before any management contrary to that direction may occur, the parties who signed the agreement will discuss that proposed management activity. Note: formerly a "Memorandum of Understanding" (MOU) was the vehicle used as the NAR agreement and in many documents, preceding development of this Directive, these terms were used interchangeably.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Natural Areas Registry is intended to recognize tracts of public land that contain natural features of statewide ecological significance and possess exceptional scientific or educational value. NARs recognize the agencies and individuals that manage these lands to protect and perpetuate the features of interest. Minnesota Statute 86A.05, Subd. 5 states that the Minnesota Scientific and Natural Areas Program was "established to protect and perpetuate in an undisturbed natural state those natural features which possess exceptional scientific or educational value." This Registry acknowledges that many of Minnesota's finest natural areas occur on other public lands that are not designated as SNAs. Through adoption of ecologically-based management principles and voluntary coordination between the land manager and the SNA Program, Registry sites protect a broader cross section of the state's natural diversity.
Tracts of public land that contain viable examples of natural features of statewide ecological significance may be identified as NAR candidate sites. Qualifying sites are selected based upon Landowner/Primary Administrator interest and on the site's ecological quality. Priority is given to sites that are within MCBS-mapped outstanding and high biodiversity significance sites, are predominantly MCBS-mapped native plant communities, and contain habitat for rare species and Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN), or geological features of statewide significance. Sites nominated for potential NAR registration are reviewed using information compiled in an Ecological Evaluation (EE) or brief written summary of natural features, to determine if the site qualifies for NAR and if protection through NAR is acceptable to all parties.

The Natural Areas Registry was established in the early 1980s within the DNR Section of Wildlife's Natural Heritage Program, in order to recognize public lands which contain natural features of special interest and to facilitate their protection and perpetuation. The Registry was modeled after The Nature Conservancy's Private Lands Register, which is no longer in existence. A number of other states (and international governmental entities) have a Natural Area Registry or Natural Area Register, which may supplement or be in lieu of a system of designated Natural Areas. In 1986, the administration of the Registry, with 26 NAR sites, was transferred from the Natural Heritage Program to the SNA Program. Both programs were within the DNR Section of Wildlife at the time. The first NAR site established was the Soudan Iron Formation at Tower Soudan State Park, February 1982. From the inception of the Natural Area Registry in 1982 through April 2014, there are 41 sites in the Registry. Note: through 2011 the NAR has been referred to as both Natural Area Register and Natural Area Registry, with adoption of this directive, the name Natural Area Registry will consistency be used in all future NAR Agreements, and if/when updated, previous agreements will be changed to use this naming convention.

This Representation SNA boundaries is based on the NAR_BASE_DATA feature class in the DNR's core GIS Library. It includes only DEDICATED features, which are dissolved on the following attributes: SITENAME, SITE_ID, BREMCODE.

The coverage should be reasonably accurate although the boundaries probably will not line up with other public land survey information. Some of the boundaries for NAR sites have been created by DNR and other partner staff, and are often sub units within a larger unit. Since the NAR boundaries have no legal standing, the accuracy of boundaries vary from site to site, but are typically reasonable approximations of the NAR site boundary.
Purpose To provide a multi-part polygon view of SNA Units for use in the SNA Work Planning - Activities application.
Time Period of Content Date 07/24/2014
Currentness Reference Time Period of Content date indicates the date which the user can be confident of accuracy and completeness of the dataset. USGS Quad Maps, DNR Land Records Database System, 1982-Present
Progress Complete
Maintenance and Update Frequency Bi-Yearly
Spatial Extent of Data Minnesota
Bounding Coordinates -97.23
-89.53
49.37
43.5
Place Keywords Minnesota, MN
Theme Keywords boundaries, SNA, Scientific and Natural Areas, Rare Plant Communities, boundaries, managed areas
Theme Keyword Thesaurus ISO 19115
Access Constraints None
Use Constraints Use of the data are constrained only by the DNR GIS Data License Agreement. See the Distribution Liability section below for a link.
Contact Person Information Mark Cleveland, Statewide Management Coordinator, SNA Program
Minnesota DNR - Division of Ecological and Water Resources
500 Lafayette Rd
Saint Paul, MN  55155
Phone: 651-259-5094
Email: mark.cleveland@state.mn.us
Browse Graphic Click to view a data sample
Associated Data Sets

Section 2 Data Quality
Attribute Accuracy Attributes are checked during data entry process
Logical Consistency
Completeness The data are statewide. NAR polygons were delineated on and digitized from 1:24,000 USGS quad maps over a period of more than 10 years. NAR additions were digitized in ArcView GIS and ArcMap 10.0, based on 1:24,000 USDS Digital Raster Graphics (DRGs) with additional reference to USGS and NAIP aerial photography.
Horizontal Positional Accuracy Unknown. The coverage should be reasonably accurate although the boundaries probably will not line up with other public land survey information.
Vertical Positional Accuracy Not Applicable
Lineage

Section 3 Spatial Data Organization (not used in this metadata)

Section 4 Coordinate System
Horizontal Coordinate Scheme Universal Transverse Mercator
UTM Zone Number 15
Horizontal Datum NAD83
Horizontal Units meters

Section 5 Attributes
Overview
Detailed Citation
Table Detail:
natural_area_registry_boundaries
Field NameValid ValuesDefinitionDefinition Source
SITE_NAME
-
Name of NAR Site
SUB_UNIT
-
area within an NAR site


Section 6 Distribution
Publisher Minnesota DNR - Division of Ecological and Water Services
Publication Date 07/24/2014
Contact Person Information Zeb Thomas, GIS Data Systems Coordinator
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
500 Lafayette Rd
St. Paul, MN  55155-4011
Phone: 651-259-5637
Email: zeb.thomas@state.mn.us
Distributor's Data Set Identifier bdry_natural_area_registry
Distribution Liability The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources General Geographic Data License Agreement is online: www.dnr.state.mn.us/sitetools/data_software_license.html
Ordering Instructions Please visit the download page for this dataset on the Minnesota Geospatial Commons website using the web link below (Online Linkage).
Online Linkage I AGREE to the notice in "Distribution Liability" above. Clicking to agree will either begin the download process or link to download information. See "Ordering Instructions" above for details.

Section 7 Metadata Reference
Metadata Date 09/24/2014
Contact Person Information Zeb Thomas, GIS Data Systems Coordinator
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
500 Lafayette Rd
St. Paul, MN  55155-4011
Phone: 651-259-5637
Email: zeb.thomas@state.mn.us
Metadata Standard Name Minnesota Geographic Metadata Guidelines
Metadata Standard Version 1.2
Metadata Standard Online Linkage http://www.mngeo.state.mn.us/committee/standards/mgmg/metadata.htm


This page last updated: 09/24/2014
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