Charlotte Wilderness Description

From the heart of the queen city, to the remote woodlands and rolling hills of the countryside, the “Charlotte Wilderness” exists within all the natural areas of Mecklenburg and the surrounding counties.  Beyond the paved places that we see everyday are the forests, fields, rivers and streams that represent the natural side of Charlotte.  Teeming with plant and animal life, these areas play many roles in the lives of the citizens in the region, including:    

  • protecting our water quality
  • improving our air quality
  • providing recreational opportunities
  • preserving our natural heritage

Keeping the "Wild" in Wilderness

The natural areas of our region are constantly under stress and pressure from a host of threats and impacts.  The rise of development fragments our open spaces and affects the ability of our ecosystems to function properly as we lose species and alter habitats.  Development also affects the creeks, streams and rivers that run throughout natural areas.  Sedimentation and pollution affect water quality, and large increases in water running from impervious surfaces and storm drains erode creek channels and change the natural design of the landscape.


Invasive-exotic plant and animal species brought here from Europe, Asia and elsewhere in the world have become established in much of our open spaces.  In many cases, these invaders have out-competed our native species and have greatly impacted the composition of our natural communities.