Biscayne National Park Nature and Science

The living coral reef is just one of Biscayne National Park's stunning natural resources. (NPS photo by Stephen Frink) Ninety-five percent of Biscayne National Park's 173,000 acres are covered by water, making it the largest marine park in the National Park System. Four major ecosystems are protected within the park. They are: - a narrow fringe of mangrove forest along the mainland shoreline of Biscayne Bay; - the clear shallow waters of Biscayne Bay itself; - the northernmost islands of the Florida Keys; and - the beginning of the world's third-longest coral reef tract. This mix of upland and marine environments provides habitat for hundreds of species of animals and plants. The park's proximity to Greater Miami, with a population approaching 2.5 million people, provides a unique set of challenges which include overfishing, boat groundings and water pollution, among others.

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November's Featured Park
The North Cascades have long been known as the North American Alps. Characterized by rugged beauty, this steep mountain range is filled with jagged peaks, deep valleys, cascading waterfalls and glaciers. North Cascades National Park Service Complex contains the heart of this mountainous region in three park units which are all managed as one and include North Cascades National Park, Ross Lake and Lake Chelan National Recreation Areas.
November's Animal
Badgers are animals of open country. Their oval burrows (ten inches across and four to six inches high) are familiar features of grasslands on sandy or loamy soils of the eastern plains or shrub country in mountain parks or western valleys.