Research Natural Area
Research Natural Areas (RNAs) are part of a nationwide network of ecological areas set aside for both research and education. The network includes areas managed by many Federal agencies. The United States Forest Service and other agencies establish these areas to typify certain types of important forest, shrubland, grassland, aquatic, geological, alpine or similar environments that have unique characteristics of scientific interest. The areas "contain important ecological and scientific values and are managed for minimum human disturbance."
The Bureau of Land Management is another agency that designates and manages Research Natural Areas. According to the Bureau of Land Management, the objectives of the RNA program are "(1) To preserve examples of all significant natural ecosystems for comparison with those influenced by man; (2) to provide educational and research areas for ecological and environmental studies; and (3) to preserve gene pools of typical and endangered plants and animals. Research natural areas are intended to represent the full array of North American ecosystems with their biological communities, habitats, natural phenomena, and geological and hydrological formations." The Bureau of Land Management manages 192 RNAs with a total area of 502,748 acres (2,034.55 km2). 
|Forest Service Region||Number of RNAs||Reference|
|2, Rocky Mountain||35||https://www.fs.fed.us/rmrs/rna-listings|
|5, Pacific Southwest||98||https://www.fs.fed.us/psw/rna/description.shtml#list|
|6, Pacific Northwest||87||http://www.fsl.orst.edu/rna/org_list.html|
|9, Eastern and Northeastern||64||https://www.nrs.fs.fed.us/rna/established/|
|10, Alaska||15||https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd573586.pdf, https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd527907.pdf, p. J-3.|
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- Bureau of Land Management. "BLM Guidelines for ACEC's and RNA's." Accessed 23 April 2014
- Bureau of Land Management. "Public Land Statistics: 2011"  p. 246. Accessed 23 April, 2014
- Research Natural Areas Program, USDA Forest Service. National Strategy: Opportunities for the Future. USFS. July, 1993. Accessed 21 July 2010.