Mohonk Preserve Policy on the Use of Unmanned Aerial Systems/Drones

Mohonk Preserve prohibits the use of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) otherwise known as unmanned aerial vehicles, drones, quadcopters, radio-controlled model airplanes and/ or any other equipment of this type, on or above its property unless such use is approved through our permit application process. This policy supports our commitment to the protection of all wildlife (specifically in this context, birds of all species), and the safety and well-being of our visitors, as well as the quality of their personal experiences in nature. This prohibition includes, but is not limited to, any and all use of drones for purposes such as aerial photography, videography and entertainment/recreational use.

Mohonk Preserve will accept applications for the operation of unmanned aerial systems for purposes such as conservation management, scientific research, mapping, authorized photo/film shoots, or other Preserve-related projects only. Applicants must carry general liability insurance coverage as specified on the application form. All applicants must operate their equipment in compliance with all federal, state and local statutes, regulations and ordinances governing the use of UAS and will provide documentation of such compliance to Mohonk Preserve upon request.

All drones weighing more than 0.55 pound but less than 55 pounds are required to be registered with the FAA. This link takes the applicant to the FAQs on the FAA registration website.

Permit Applications will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. If approved, Mohonk Preserve will issue a limited permit for the use of unmanned aerial systems for the specific project and time period for which the application was submitted.

The application (including a listing of Standard and Special Conditions for UAS Operations) can be viewed and printed here. The completed form shall be returned to: Jon Ross, Associate Director of Visitor Experience, at

Banner photo by John Mizel