NAOCC is a coalition of organizations dedicated to conserving the diverse orchid heritage of the U.S. and Canada. Based at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, it also includes the National Zoological Park, the National Museum of Natural History, and Smithsonian Gardens. The U.S. Botanic Garden is the other founding partner. The initial group of public and private organizations that support NAOCC have joined forces with a common goal: to ensure the survival of native orchids for future generations. To this end, NAOCC’s collaborators are working to preserve habitats, create and maintain national collections of seeds and orchid mycorrhizal fungi, and support research on orchid ecology, conservation and restoration. An important goal of NAOCC is to provide the public with opportunities to join in the effort to conserve native orchids.
What are we doing?
Why is it important?
There is currently no centralized effort to understand or preserve native orchids in the U.S. and Canada and the majority of the orchid research and propagation efforts have focused on tropical species. Research on temperate orchids has been conducted by a relatively small number of individuals, educational institutions, and botanical gardens. The pace of research and conservation efforts relative to native orchids in the U.S. and Canada is far too slow to assure the survival of the more than 50% of all native orchids that have been listed as threatened or endangered. Only through a focused large-scale and integrated effort that engages the public will survival of orchids be assured. NAOCC is the first nationwide collaborative effort to seek ways to conserve the orchids of North America.