National Park Service

Inventory & Monitoring (I&M)

Natural Resource Inventories in National Parks

The Inventory and Monitoring Program provides guidance, funding, and technical assistance for parks to complete a set of 12 "basic" natural resource inventories. These basic inventories are common to all parks with significant natural resources, and are intended to provide park managers with the minimum information needed to effectively manage the natural resources of their park. See the Inventory Strategic Plan for a description and status for each of the inventories.

List of the 12 Basic Inventories

Natural resource inventories are extensive point-in-time surveys to determine the location or condition of a resource, including the presence, class, distribution, and status of biological resources such as plants and animals, and abiotic resources such as air, water, soils, landforms, and climate. Inventories may involve both the compilation of existing information and the acquisition of new information.

The primary purpose of natural resource inventories is to assess and document the current condition and knowledge of natural resources in the parks. Inventories allow comparison of existing conditions to the natural or desired state of parks and establish a solid baseline for making scientifically sound management decisions and long-term monitoring plans that ensure the future health of the parks.

Inventory fact sheets were generated using the templates found on our Document Template page

More Information

Information on specific inventories completed in parks is available from the IRMA Portal. Click here for Inventory Tracking Search, which allows you to select an inventory and park, then view associated records and data sets.

Last Updated: October 14, 2014 Contact Webmaster