The University of Michigan Biological Station (UMBS) was founded in 1909. UMBS students and faculty have been studying environmental change since day one.
UMBS was established on land acquired from lumber barons after virtually all the trees had been cleared. Student and faculty researchers studied the biota of a landscape ravaged by catastrophic logging and subsequent fires, allowing them to learn first-hand how land exploitation impacted the natural environment.
The station's 10,000-acre property has since been reforested via natural processes. But new environmental challenges have emerged, climate change and invasive species foremost among them. Fortunately, dedicated student and faculty researchers continue to roll up their scientific sleeves at the station, and they do so with an increasingly interdisciplinary approach. Natural historians collaborate with microbiologists, ecologists with climatologists, geologists with atmospheric scientists. These cross-disciplinary interactions – strengths of UMBS – foster a greater understanding of the natural world.
Today, UMBS students engage in and learn about biology and environmental science by studying directly in the field and by developing relationships with some of the world’s most respected experts. UMBS is a highly interactive community where students, faculty and researchers come together to learn about the natural world, to examine environmental change, and to seek solutions to the critical environmental challenges of our times.
International Biosphere Reserve
In recognition of its long and robust scientific research history, UMBS has been recognized by UNESCO as an international biosphere reserve since 1979.
There are 47 Biosphere Reserves, also known as the Man and the Biosphere Program, in the United States. Follow this link to the UNESCO website for a list of all the Biosphere Reserves in the U.S.
UMBS' MAB designation is currently under review.