Officials want to make sure your next visit to Yosemite National Park isn't marred by a drone buzzing overhead. On Friday, the National Park Service issued a statement informing visitors that unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are banned inside the park's 1,169 square miles of land in California. The Park Service pointed to existing federal conservation regulations in justifying the ban. The regulations prohibit "delivering or retrieving a person or object by parachute, helicopter, or other airborne means, except in emergencies involving public safety or serious property loss, or pursuant to the terms and conditions of a permit."
By making clear that the Park Service does not welcome drones — and presumably enforcing those rules as best it can — officials hope to cut back on a practice that has become more and more popular over the years. Relatively inexpensive unmanned drones have made it easy for amateur videographers to capture some incredible shots, and sites like Yosemite with fantastic natural beauty are an attractive subject. However, the Park Service notes that drones are not only a nuisance because of the sound they produce, but they can "can cause confusion and distraction for rescue personnel and other parties involved in the rescue operation." In addition, they can impact wildlife in the area, like "sensitive nesting peregrine falcons on cliff walls."