Conservation Science

Protecting Pennsylvania’s Plants and Animals

Science and Research

Science-based decision-making is a core value at the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy. Our scientists provide scientific support and planning for a variety of Conservancy programs, including land protection, watershed restoration, land stewardship planning and policy development. We share information with similar programs across the country and work with state and federal agencies to ensure that the information is used to advance conservation efforts.

Our Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program scientists collect and manage information about the state’s plants, animals and habitats. We focus on those species that are rare or exceptionally important for the state and region. Using geographic information systems (GIS) mapping, we document exact locations, follow populations over time and manage databases with tens of thousands of records.

Our watershed conservation program’s aquatic science work studies and assesses various freshwater aquatic systems – both at a molecular level and across entire ecosystems. This work often leads to on-the-ground restoration projects that improve our region’s rivers and streams.

Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program

A partnership between the Conservancy, PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, PA Game Commission, and PA Fish and Boat Commission.

Aquatic Science

The study of how human and other impacts are influencing aquatic life in our region’s rivers and streams.