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
2020 Conservation Outlook
Current state and trend of VALUES
Overall PROTECTION and MANAGEMENT
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Description of values
Rare and unique speleothems
|№||Organization||Brief description of Active Projects||Website|
|1||/||Searching for close relatives of Pseudogymnoascus destructans and clues to natural defenses in bats at Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico|
|2||/||Population dynamics and ecology of Ocotillo.|
|3||University of New Mexico||Late Pleistocene and Holocene paleoclimatology of the southwestern United States.|
|4||/||CHDN uplands vegetation and soils monitoring.|
|5||University of Texas at El Paso||Critical loads of nitrogen deposition in grasslands at Carlsbad Caverns National Park|
|6||Texas Tech University||Biological invasions, fire, and changes in landscape flammability in the arid west|
|7||Penn State University||Quantification of methane emissions from natural gas extraction in the Permian Basin|
|8||MSC Project- University of Tennessee, Knoxville||Improving recreation and conservation in environments shared by humans and bats||
|9||/||Is the causative agent of White-nose Syndrome, Pseudogynmoacus destructans, present in Carlsbad Caverns?|
|10||University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, United States||Late Guadalupian evolution of th Delaware Basin: insights from stable isotope and trace element Geochemistry|
|11||/||Assessing quaternary tectonics in the Guadalupe Mountains of New Mexico using cave shelfstones as tilt meters|
|12||Senckenberg am Meer, Marine Research Department||Subaqueous celestite crystals forming in Lechuguilla Cave.|
|13||/||The geomorphic extent of Rockslide Cave determined through survey and inventory|
|14||National Cave and Karst Research Institute||Cave lighting and algae study, Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico||
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.
NPS. (2018). Wilderness Report: National Park Service Wilderness Stewardship Program. [online] National Park Service, US Department of Interior. Available at: https://www.nps.gov/orgs/1981/upload/2018-NPS-Wilderness-Re… (Accessed 5 November 2020).
Polyak, V.J., Rasmussen, J.B.T., and Asmerom, Y. (2018). Drip water measurements from Carlsbad Cavern: implications towards paleoclimate records yielded from evaporative-zone stalagmites. International Journal of Speleology, 47 (2): 201-212.
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).