HBS Facilities
Natural Resources

The Station grounds contain over 70 acres of relatively little disturbed woodlands bounded by State and Federal lands. Scientists and students also have access to 172,500 acres of mixed mesophytic woodlands, old fields, and grasslands in the US Forest Service's Land-Between-the-Lakes Natural Recreation Area including experimental watersheds. Additional opportunities exist nearby for the study of environmental impacts of wetland restoration, agriculture, strip mining, petrochemical processing, shipping and electricity generation.

There are ample opportunities for recreation at or near the Station including swimming, sailing, canoeing, fishing, horseback riding, hiking and camping.

The Biological Station and the Land-Between-the-Lakes (LBL) have been designated as an Experimental Ecological Reserve by the National Science Foundation and the Institute of Ecology. As an Experimental Ecological Reserve, the Station and LBL have been identified as an important natural system for long-term ecological research. Interaction among scientists is intended to develop collaborative and integrated research on the terrestrial and aquatic systems of Station and LBL sites.

LBL has been designated as a US Man and the Biosphere reserve by UNESCO, further enhancing the region's teaching and research resources.

Research Environment

The Station provides an excellent base for year-round research in aquatic and terrestrial biology. Visiting scientists and graduate student investigators are encouraged to utilize the Station. Laboratory space, offices and a wide variety of equipment are available for research at the Station. There is a large covered dock on Kentucky Lake equipped with specimen holding and processing rooms. The Station maintains three pontoon boats, workboats with motors and trailers, canoes, and the Surveyor I, a 23-foot SeaArk research vessel.

The main building contains 13,000 sq. ft. as research laboratories, classrooms, office space, kitchen/dining area, computer room, and library. Construction of a research glasshouse/mesocosm facility was completed in 2002 through funds provided by the National Science Foundation. The new Resource Building was completed in 2003 with NSF support and provides additional research and classroom space, a fabrication shop, dive support, and herbarium facilities.

Equipment Available

Equipment available for field research and teaching includes such items as four-wheel drive vehicles, traps, various nets, water samplers, seines, portable fish shockers, and camping equipment. Laboratory equipment includes a new JEOL scanning electron microscope, balances, teaching and research grade microscopes, spectrophotometers, organic carbon analyzer, CHNS/O analyzer, gas chromatograph, ion chromatograph, fluorometers, flow injection analyzer, photometers, particle counter, autoclave, water baths, incubators, drying ovens, dissolved oxygen meters, pH meters, liquid scintillation counter, and facilities for radiotracer and microbial studies. A stable isotope mass spectrometer is now available. Special research items may need to be supplied by individual investigators, and their availability should be determined ahead of time. Fees for the use of space, facilities, boats, and housing are reasonable, and fee schedules may be obtained from the Station Director.

Biological Collections

Several outstanding collections of flora and fauna of western Kentucky are maintained by the Department of Biological Sciences. Over 19,000 plant specimens are available in the Purchase Area Herbarium as well as in the HBS herbarium . The zoological museum contains more than 200 amphibians and reptiles species and extensive collections of mammal skins and skulls. Fish and invertebrate collections are maintained at the Biological Station.

Last Updated on July 11, 2019
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