43 Awesome Things You Didn’t Know About National Parks

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1Ramsagar National Park

Ramsagar National Park

Ramsagar National Park in Bangladesh has no big trees. The park consists of a big lake surrounded by embankments. The plants are removed by local villagers for food, fodder, making furniture, medicine, and fuel. There is a decrease in indigenous fish species in the lake due to exploitation.

2. Akagera National Park once protected nearly 10% of Rwanda and was considered to be one of the finest wildlife reserves in the whole of Africa. Over half of the park was de-gazetted and resettled with new villages due to the massive numbers of settlers who returned to Rwanda in the late 1990s.

3. Voyageurs National Park in northern Minnesota has some of the oldest rocks in the US, dating back to 2.5 billion years old, which is even older than some geologic formations in the western US.

4. A 3,000-acre wilderness wolf sanctuary in Frazier Park, California helps heal military veterans who have treatment-resistant PTSD. Vets are paired with hurt, abandoned, and exploited captive wolves/wolf-dog hybrids to tend to daily.

5. Kavir National Park in Iran hosts car racing competitions, which, together with military maneuvers, have led many unique animal species, such as the Persian zebras and the Asian cheetahs to flee the area as they do not feel secure anymore.

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6Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park is slightly larger than the state of Rhode Island.

7. The Petrified Forest National Park has a "Conscience Pile" where returned petrified wood, stolen from the park over the years, are now stored. They can't be replaced to their original locations, even if the sender includes a detailed map, because it would spoil the park's research.

8. Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve of Canada contains a village site of the Haida people. It features the largest collection of Haida totem poles in their original locations, and they are being allowed to succumb to natural decay in the lush temperate rainforest climate.

9. Tai National Park in Côte d'Ivoire contains one of the last areas of primary rainforest in West Africa and is a natural reservoir of the Ebola virus. The original tribes of the forest region, for totemic reasons, did not eat chimpanzees and thus preserved the chimpanzee populations.

10. Canada's Tuktut Nogait National Park received only 8 visitors in 2014. There are no facilities in the park, so everything must be brought in: food and drink, tents for sleeping, tents for cooking, and a tent for the toilet.

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11Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park

Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park

Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park in Belarus contains parts of the last primeval forest fragment of the European woodlands that once stretched across the European Plain. Since 2015, there has been a visa-free regime within the forest for hikers and cyclists between Poland and Belarus.

12. Until 1933, Kibira National Park was a hunting reserve of the kings of Burundi. The local people respected the forest, investing it with magical power. The sacred character of the forest, even prior to the colonial era, helped to conserve it.

13. Wood Buffalo National Park in Canada is larger in area than the country of Switzerland and is the world's second-largest national park. It was created in 1922 as a sanctuary for the last bison population in the nation and aboriginal residents.

14. Zambia's Mweru Wantipa National Park has had no management and protection for several decades and lacks visitor facilities. Consequently, its wildlife population has been much reduced in recent years. Its black rhinoceros are extinct and it is also unlikely to have elephants and lions.

15. Yellowstone National Park is believed to not just be the first national park in America but is also the first national park in the world.

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16Olympic National Park

Olympic National Park

375 goats were airlifted from Olympic National Park in Washington State after they trampled tourists because they had developed a taste for human urine.

17. The Florida Manatee Sanctuary Act makes it illegal to molest, harass, or disturb manatees. A Florida father was arrested by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission after posting photos of himself hugging a baby manatee out of the water, and letting his daughter sit on it.

18. About 4 Canadian wolves were air-dropped into Isle Royale National Park in Michigan to boost the park's wolf pack to 8. The extra wolves were brought in to help keep the moose population in check, thereby preventing mass starvation of the moose herd.

19. Lions still live in their natural habitat in India. There are an estimated 650 lions living in Gir National Park. This makes India the only country where lions and tigers could theoretically meet in the wild.

20. In 2004, tourists at the Yala National Park on Sri Lanka's south west coast (which fell victim to the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami), were unable to spot any wildlife on safari because the animals had sensed the tremor vibrations 4 days earlier and fled to higher ground.

21Nigeria's Okomu National Park

Nigeria's Okomu National Park

Nigeria's Okomu National Park holds a small fragment of the rich forest that once covered the region and is now less than one-third of its original size. It continues to shrink, threatened by encroaching villages and logging around the park.

22. Phumdis are a series of floating islands, exclusive to the Loktak Lake in Manipur, India. It has the world’s only floating national park, named Keibul Lamjao National Park.

23. Tucked in the middle of Los Angeles, is a small bird sanctuary called Serenity Park. It's a place where abused birds and combat vets bond and heal. The theory is that, through their shared trauma, they connect on an emotional and almost spiritual level. They have had much success in treating PTSD.

24. Hundred Islands National Park in Philippines has 124 islands at low tide but only three of them have been developed for tourism: Governor Island, Quezon Island, and Children's Island. The peculiar “mushroom-like” shapes of some of the islands were caused by the eroding action of ocean waves.

25. At the Hawaii's Volcanoes National Park visitor’s center, there used to be a Cursed Lava Rocks display featuring lava rocks stolen by tourists, mailed back to the park rangers, along with stories of the string of bad luck these tourists received since the rocks were in their possession.

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