OK, it's not as glam an eco-system as beach dunes or plunging, striated canyons. But in the case of this particular swatch—23.4 square non-contiguous miles across six Northeastern states—the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decided that protection was so crucial to the 380 species of birds and other wildlife who called it home that they took the unusual step of creating a checkerboard of protected areas in the heart of a densely-populated area.
Called the National Thicket Wildlife Refuge—cool name, we think—it will enclose parts of Cape Cod (MA), Maine, Rhode Island, and the Housatonic area of Connecticut and New York. The northern Merrimack Valley and Dover areas of New Hampshire are also part of the protectorate.
Welcome to the world, new parklands. We hope you do your job well!