Government of New Brunswick


A Protected Natural Area (PNA) is an area of land or water permanently set-aside in the Province of New Brunswick for the conservation of biological diversity.


Applicants must be at least 19 years of age or older.


There are 202 Protected Natural Areas on provincial Crown Land and six on private land owned by the Nature Conservancy of Canada, the Nature Trust of New Brunswick and the Meduxnekeak River Association. More information of the private sites can be obtained from the relevant organisation. There are two classes of Protected Natural Areas where different restrictions apply: Class I and Class II PNAs.

Class I PNAs, require complete protection as they contain ecologically sensitive features that could be damaged with human activity. All activities are prohibited in these areas, except by permit from the Minister for educational and scientific purposes. There are six Class I Protected Natural Areas.

Class II PNAs protect ecosystems that are representative of the New Brunswick landscape or that are ecologically important or rare. Certain recreational uses having minimal environmental impact and traditional food gathering activities are permitted in these areas while industrial, commercial, agricultural uses and development are prohibited. Educational and scientific activities require a permit. There are a total of 196 Class II Protected Natural Areas on Crown land and six on private land.

Your application will be reviewed by the Minister and possibly by other governmental agencies. The review process will take from 1 to 6 weeks, following which you will either receive your permit with Terms and Conditions or you will be notified that your application was denied.

Non-consumptive recreational activities: Certain recreational activities having minimal environmental impact (e.g. hiking, canoeing, camping with a tent, and nature interpretation) are allowed without formal authorization from the department.

Consumptive activities: Hunting, trapping, snaring and recreational fishing are allowed and are regulated by the Fish and Wildlife Act and the General Regulation - Protected Natural Areas Act. Only permits issued under the Fish and Wildlife Act are required, as on Crown Land outside of the PNAs.

Non-commercial food gathering activities are also allowed.

Access: Activities such as biking, horseback riding, dog sledding, and the use of off-road vehicles are limited to recreational roads designated for those purposes. Certain other roads are designated as access roads.

Scientific activities are allowed with a scientific PNA permit.

Educational activities are allowed with an educational PNA permit.

Permits may be issued for a term of up to 5 years, and are renewable upon expiration.


Unless otherwise specified, Fees exclude the harmonized sales tax (HST).

Fee DescriptionRate in $Effective Date
  Scientific permit (+HST)  
  Research and other scientific activities 25.002004-05-31
  Educational Permit  2004-05-31
  Educational activities including class excursions, scout/guide visits, etc. 0.002004-05-31
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