NYC Resources311Office of the Mayor

Official Website of the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation

Urban Park Rangers

Urban Wildlife

Urban Park Ranger trying to catch a duck

The Urban Park Ranger Wildlife Program cares for the flora and fauna of our parklands, promoting stewardship through education and community involvement.

City parks are natural habitats. For hundreds of species of wildlife and the thousands of species of plants native to New York City, the parks are home. The Urban Park Rangers care for this parkland, monitoring habitat and species survival, restoring ecosystems by returning native species, and protecting the health of existing wildlife. The Urban Park Rangers Wildlife Management Program also works to connect communities to their wildlife resources, through volunteer data collection and education programs. The Rangers have brought back American Bald Eagles and Screech Owls to Manhattan, native turtles to Staten Island, Grey Tree Frogs to Queens, and many other species to different parks.

More about the Bald Eagle Program

Learn about the Ranger’s efforts to protect the endangered piping plover with the Rockaway Beach Endangered Species Nesting Area (RBESNA)


Coyotes are common throughout New York State. Learn how to be wily about coyotes: read our tips for living with the animals, and when to report a sighting, on our Living with Coyotes in New York City page

Wildlife Research & Habitat Enhancement Permits

Anyone wishing to conduct research on wildlife in city parks, including but not limited to monitoring using anything other than portable, hand-held or simple free-standing equipment; trapping and/or releasing animals including invertebrates; entering closed or limited-access areas; or collecting water or soil samples; or anyone wishing to enhance wildlife habitat in city parks, including but not limited to the installation of nest boxes,  MUST apply for a permit from the Department of Parks & Recreation Urban Park Rangers.  This permit is in addition to any permits required by Federal and/or State Agencies with jurisdiction over the wildlife being studied, and also any other Department of Parks & Recreation permits from other Offices or Divisions.

Please visit our Research Permits page to apply for a permit.

Was this information helpful?