Proposed Mountain Bogs National Wildlife Refuge
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Draft Environmental analysis and land protection plan available for comment

March 6, 2013

We are pleased to announce the public review of the Draft Land Protection Plan and Environmental Assessment (Draft LPP/EA) for the proposed establishment of Mountain Bogs National Wildlife Refuge.

The assessment outlines the actions proposed to conserve and protect rare and severely threatened wetlands in the Southern Appalachian Mountains of eastern Tennessee and western North Carolina. In the assessment, two alternatives and their potential impacts on the environment are evaluated.

We welcome any comments or recommendations you have concerning this proposal. To be considered in the preparation of the final Environmental Assesment/Land Protection Plan, your comments must be received no later than April 10, 2013.

Comments on the draft documents should be directed to: Oliver Van Den Ende, Project Planner, Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge Comples, 2700 Refuge Headquarters Rd., Decatur, Alabama 305603; telephone 256/353-7243, ext. 28; or

Requests for further information, or requests for paper copies of the documents should be directed to: Gary Peeples, 160 Zillicoa St., Asheville, NC; or; or 828/258-3939, ext. 234.


Download the Draft Environmental Assessment/Land Protection Plan in its entirety (.pdf 18.55 MP)


Download individual portions of the Draft Environmental Assessment/Land Protection Plan:

  • Cover and table of contents (.pdf 721 KB)
  • Land Protection Plan (.pdf 2.7 MB)
    • Sections of the Draft Environmental Assessment are listed below:
    • Purpose and need (.pdf 5 MB)
    • Affected environment (.pdf 6.5 MB)
    • Alternatives (.pdf 3.8 MB)
    • Environmental consequences (.pdf 214 KB)
    • Appendices (.pdf 475 KB)
    • Glossary (.pdf 136 KB)
    • References (.pdf 123 KB)

      Parntership brings successful restoration of Ochlawaha Bog

      July 13, 2012



      Open house schedule set

      June 15, 2012

      The Service will host four open houses to answer questions and solicit input regarding the proposed Mountain Bogs National Wildlife Refuge. These events will be informal, drop-in affairs allowing members of the public to speak one-on-one with Service staff. The meetings are not sponsored by the respective libraries.

      • June 26, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Henderson County Public Library in Hendersonville, N.C.;
      • June 27, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Ashe County Public Library in West Jefferson, N.C.;
      • July 10, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Macon County Public Library in Franklin, N.C.;
      • July 11, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Watauga County Public Library in Boone, N.C.


      The Nature Conservancy's Megan Sutton discusses the importance of Southern Appalachian bogs

      June 11, 2012



      New National Wildlife Refuge Proposed to Protect Some of Appalachia’s Rarest Places

      June 6, 2012

      Biologists discuss monitoring rare bog plants. Photo: Gary Peeples, USFWS.Biologists discuss monitoring rare bog plants. Photo: Gary Peeples, USFWS.

      In 1903 President Theodore Roosevelt created the first National Wildlife Refuge to protect brown pelican breeding grounds on the east coast of Florida. The refuge system has since grown to more than 556 refuges across the nation, and now the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service proposes establishing a refuge to protect Southern Appalachian bogs, one of the nation’s rarest natural habitats.

      “National Wildlife Refuges are lands, managed by or in partnership with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, set aside for the conservation of fish, wildlife, and plants,” explained Rick Huffines, deputy regional chief, National Wildlife Refuge System. “Given the rarity of these bogs and their importance to plants and wildlife, creating a refuge to conserve them is a natural fit.” News release


      Service biologist Sue Cameron discusses the role Southern Appalachian bogs play for birds

      June 1, 2012


      Service proposes conserving rare Appalachian bogs with National Wildlife Refuge

      May 29, 2012

      Photo: Fern fronds emerging in early spring at a mountain bog. Photo: Gary Peeples, USFWS.Fern fronds emerging in early spring at a mountain bog. Photo: Gary Peeples, USFWS.

      The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposes to protect southern Appalachian Mountain bogs, one of the nation’s rarest and most imperiled plant and wildlife habitats, through the creation of the Mountain Bogs National Wildlife Refuge.

      This follows years of effort to conserve these areas on the part of the Service, other conservation organizations, and individual citizens. The proposed refuge would eventually include up to 23,478 acres scattered across as many as 30 sites in Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Clay, Graham, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Transylvania, Wilkes, and Watauga counties, North Carolina; and Carter and Johnson counties, Tennessee. Learn more



Contact us:

Mountain Bogs National Wildife Refuge
160 Zillicoa St.
Asheville, NC 28801


Project Map (.pdf 262 kb)

Project Map

Photo albums

Photo: Botanist Mara Alexander examines bog plant. Credit: Gary Peeples

Service staff review the restoration of Ochlawaha Bog


Photo: Biologist Sue Cameron looks for birds. Credit Gary Peeples

Conducting the first known bird survey at Ochlawaha bog


Photo: Megan Mailloux documents bog restoration Credit Gary Peeples

Ochlawaha bog restoration - a project of the Service, Carolina Mountain Land Conservation, N.C. Plant Conservation Program, and others


Photo: Botanist Carolyn Wells takes a compass bearing Credit Gary Peeples

Biologists from the Atlanta Botanical Garden, The Nature Conservancy, and the Service keep tabs on bog plants


Biologist Dottie Brown searches for animals. Credit: Gary Peeples

Service and N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission biologists search for reptiles and amphibians in a bog


Biologist Gabrielle Graeter measures a turtle. Creidt: Gary Peeples

Service, N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, and N.C. Natural Heritage Program biologists check on bog reptiles and ambphibians



Last updated: March 19, 2013