Biodiversity is the totality of genes, species and ecosystems in a region. Because of its climate and topography, North Carolina is rich in biodiversity. From the Appalachians to the Atlantic, North Carolina is home to a wealth of plants, animals and unique natural areas, some of which can be found nowhere else on Earth. All life is interconnected and the loss of a single species can reverberate throughout an ecosystem. Humans depend on biodiversity for food, medicine and the equilibrium of natural systems.

Resources for Exploring Biodiversity in your Area

North Carolina Natural Heritage Program Under the "Data Services" tab click on the "Database Search" to find all of the rare, threatened and endangered species in your county! The North Carolina Natural Heritage Program is part of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The program inventories, catalogues, and supports conservation of the rarest and most outstanding elements of the natural diversity of our state. By consolidating information about hundreds of rare species and natural communities the program ensures that the public is able to get the information that is needed to weigh the ecological significance of various sites. This information supports informed evaluations of the trade-offs associated with biological diversity and development projects before plans have been finalized. Finally, this information facilitates the establishment of priorities for the protection of North Carolina's most significant natural areas.

Carolina Nature Will Cook has created this fantastic resource that provides photographs of and information about many of the species in our state. The resources are categorized into birds, plants, spiders, herps, dragonflies, moths, butterflies, and more.

The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission The Wildlife Resources Commission (WRC) was created to conserve and sustain the state’s fish and wildlife resources through research, scientific management, wise use, and public input. Click on the "Learning" box at the top to get more information about North Carolina's species, habitats, laws and more.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Search the Service's list of endangered species listed by state and much, much, more! The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's mission is to work with others, to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, and plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people.

Encyclopedia of Life An effort to centralize the knowledge and information of all life on earth from books, journals, databases, websites, specimen collections and the minds of people into one searchable database.