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» Ranger Service
Ranger Service

In Hungary, the state park ranger service, which has been established to guard the protected natural areas and the nature conservation values has about 45 years history.

Park Ranger

Today, the park ranger is a collective term, involving state park rangers with different duties and municipality park rangers. State park rangers are members of the Park Ranger Service which operates the national park directorates. All of them are public servants. Their task is to protect the natural and protected natural areas and values and to preserve archaeological sites and findings and to prevent their damage. The work of park rangers can be assisted by the public as civilian park rangers in voluntary or institutionally organised form. Local autohorities are allowed to preserve protected nature conservation areas-witch have local importance-by municipality park rangers.

The state park ranger carries out a complex professional, nature conservation management task. They have the right for appropriate actions which is compulsory for them at the same time. They are official persons, equipped with small arms and other technical devices and protected by stronger legal defence.

There are 250 rangers working for the national park directorates. Consequently, the operational field of one ranger currently covers 372 km² in average, 34 km² of which is protected natural area and 79 km² Natura 2000 area.

 The rights and duties of a park ranger

The law inforcement, which were brought to protect the nature and archeological heritages.This means the supervision of complying to all legal and official prescriptions (resolutions) which concern protected and non-protected natural values and areas as well as archaeological sites and findings.
Further right and duty of the ranger
  • For arresting, carrying out identity checks and checking the package, clothing, vehicle of the person who act against the protection of the interest of nature and archaeological heritage or endanger or damage natural values, areas, archaeological site of occurrence or make a wrongful act or can be strongly suspected of doing that.
  • For retaining the natural values or archaeological finding which were obtained illegally and the equipment used during the damage or endangering action.
  • For detaining, retaining or taking to the police station the person who was caught in the act which is connected with the protection of nature and archaeology heritage or strongly suspected to do that.
  • For using devices to enforce the law and stop the resistance against the legal action (physical force, gas spray, dog, handgun for the purpose of self-defense).
  • During an infringement of the law happens connected to the protection of nature or archaeological heritage, the ranger is entitled to initiate an offence, administrative or criminal procedure.
  • For area closure in order to present the damaging of natural area, natural value.
  • In some cases which are specified by the law the ranger is entitled to fine on the spot.
During their professional tasks, members of park ranger service carry out habitat and species protection, take part in the data and information collection which serve as a base for the nature conservation management. They have a role in the environmental education and different kinds of awareness raising.
The recognition and identification of a park ranger
The park ranger can be recognised and identified by the uniform which symbolise her/his authority for legal action and defence in the criminal law. The uniform marks of the park rangers: the arm badge, the marks of which indicates that the person is member of the staff, the function mark and the badge on the cap. The official service card justifies the right for legal action. The official badge which has serial number makes possible the identification of the ranger.
  • Civil park rangers
  • Police
  • Disaster management
  • Other persons performing law enforcement functions


The work of rangers can be assisted by volunteer civil park rangers. They have only civic rights. Training course and exam are needed. An agreement must be concluded with the National Park Directorate. Operative instructions are given by rangers. There are more than 700 civil nature guards in Hungary.
  • Act No. CLIX of 1997 on the Armed Safety Duty, and on the Nature Guard and Rural Guard Duties;
  • Act No. CXX of 2012 on the Activities of Officials Performing Police Tasks and on the Amendment of Certain Regulations on the Avoidance of Truancy;
  • BM (Ministry of Interior) ministerial decree No. 70/2012. (XII.14.) on the Detailed Rules on the Equipment of Officials Performing Police Tasks and Armed Security Guards with Clothing;
  • BM (Ministry of Interior) ministerial decree No. 69/2012. (XII.14.) on the Administrative Service Fee of Service Licence and Service Plaque of Officials Performing Police Tasks;
  • BM (Ministry of Interior) ministerial decree No. 68/2012. (XII.14.) on the Trai ing and Examination of Officials Performing Police Tasks, of Assistant Officers, of Body Guards and Property Guards;
  • Government decree No. 4/2000. (I.21.) on the Detailed Regulations on Nature Guards and Guard Duties;
  • KöM (Ministry of Environment Protection) ministerial decree No. 9/2000 (V.19.) on the Service Regulation of the Nature Guard Duty;
  • KTM (Ministry of Environment and Regional Development) ministerial decree No. 33/1997. (XI.20.) on the civil nature guards.
  The plaque of the service position




The service card and the badge in service






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