Carlsbad Caverns National Park
This karst landscape in the state of New Mexico comprises over 80 recognized caves. They are outstanding not only for their size but also for the profusion, diversity and beauty of their mineral formations. Lechuguilla Cave stands out from the others, providing an underground laboratory where geological and biological processes can be studied in a pristine setting. © UNESCO
2017 Conservation Outlook
Current state and trend of VALUES
Overall PROTECTION and MANAGEMENT
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Description of values
Rare and unique speleothems
|№||Organization/ individuals||Project duration||Brief description of Active Projects|
|1||Dr Eric Metzler||10 year study of moth species found in park|
|2||Steve West||Ongoing 35-year study of birds in the park, especially ringing cave swallows.|
|3||Dr. Diana Northup||Long-term study of cave microbes and status and condition of the native bat populations.|
|4||Hazel Barton||Oligotrophy in caves.|
|5||Jim Cornett||Population dynamics and ecology of Ocotillo.|
|№||Site need title||Brief description of potential site needs||Support needed for following years|
|1||N.A.||Potential impacts of gas flow from area gas wells, gas pipelines, etc.|
|2||N.A.||Biodiversity studies in park to evaluate number of species and distribution.|
|3||N.A.||Impacts of exotic species on park biodiversity.|
Bailey, V. (1928). Animal life of the Carlsbad Cavern. Monograph of the American Society of Mammalogists 3: 1–195.
Cunningham, K.I., Northup, D.E., Pollastro, R.M., Wright, W.G. and LaRock, E.J. (1995). Bacteria, fungi and biokarst in Lechuguilla Cave, Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico. Environmental Geology, 25(1), pp.2-8.
Degenhardt, W.G., Painter, C.W., and Price, A.H. (1996). Amphibians and Reptiles of New Mexico. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press.
Geluso, K. N. and Geluso, K. (2004). Mammals of Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico. Bulletin No. 17. Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska State Museum.
IUCN Consultation. (2017). IUCN World Heritage Confidential Consultation: Carlsbad Caverns National Park, United States of America.
Levine, D. and Pyne, N. (2010). The Best of America under Threat from Underfunding. Washington, DC: Environment America Research and Policy Center.
Metzler, E.H. and Knudson, E.C. (2011). A new species of Elasmia Moschler from New Mexico and Texas, and a new subspecies of Elasmia Mandela (Druce) from Texas and Oklahoma (Lepidoptera, Nothodontidae, Nystaleinae), ZooKeys 149: 51–67.
Metzler, E.H., Knudson, E.C., Poole, R.W., Lafontaine, J.D. and Pogue, M.G. (2013). A review of the genus Ogdoconta Butler (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae, Condicinae, Condicini) from North America north of Mexico with descriptions of three new species. ZooKeys 264: 165–191.
State Party of the United States of America. (2013). Periodic Report Second Cycle Section II: Carlsbad Caverns National Park. [online] Paris, France: UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Available at: (Accessed: 18 February 2019).
West, S. (1995). Cave Swallow (Hirundo fulva). In: A. Poole and F. Gill (eds.) The Birds of North America, No. 141. Philadelphia, PA and Washington, DC: The Academy of Natural Sciences and The American Ornithologists’ Union.
World Heritage Committee. (2006). Annex of Document WHC-06/30.COM/11B (WHC-06/30.COM/11B.ADD). In: Decision 30 COM 11B Carlsbad Caverns National Park State of Outstanding Universal Value (United States of America), p. 172. [online] Vilnius, Lithuania. Available at: (Accessed: 18 February 2019).