ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is seeking a national natural landmark designation for the 3,200-acre Albany Pine Bush Preserve.
She said in a statement released Monday that the pine barrens area on Albany's western outskirts is "a gem of ecological diversity and rare geological landforms."
She sent a letter to the U.S. Secretary of the Interior asking for the designation.
The preserve is popular with hikers, birdwatchers and anglers. It's also one of 13 sites in the country designated as a recovery site for the endangered Karner blue butterfly.
According to the National Park Service's website, there are 596 designated National Natural Landmark sites in the United States, 25 of them in New York.