University of Missouri MU School of Natural Resources College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources
Contact  | 

Information for:  Future Students  |   Current Students  |   Alumni

Research Facilities

Anheuser-Bush Natural Resources Building

Anheuser-Busch Natural Resources Building

The School of Natural Resources is located in the Anheuser-Busch Natural Resources Building, which was dedicated in September 1998. The building is a 99,000 square foot facility on the MU campus, devoted exclusively to addressing natural resource issues in Missouri, the nation and the world.

Containing laboratories equipped with the latest technology for research in natural resource fields and computer-equipped teaching laboratories, the building is a state-of-the-art education facility.

Duley-Miller Erosion Plots

In 1917, Dr. F. L. Duley and Dr. M. F. Miller established seven test plots for the purpose of measuring erosion. The work led to the formation of the United States Soil Conservation Service and development of the Universal Soil Loss Equation.

Because of the historical significance of the work that had been done on the Duley-Miller Erosion Plots, these plots are now designated as a Registered National Historic Landmark. In 1992, a celebration was held to celebrate 75 years of research.

Horticulture and Agroforestry Research Center (HARC)

From its origin in 1953 as a site for applied field research in vegetables and fruits, the then 540-acre Horticulture Research Center has evolved to become an interdisciplinary plant science facility where researchers and educators can collaborate on projects that affect the agricultural, forestry and horticultural practices of the people of Missouri and the nation.

Horticulture and Agroforestry Research Center

High priority is given to demonstrating ways in which plants improve the quality of the environments in which we live and to using plants suited to thrive in this region. In 1994, a large program in agroforestry was introduced to the now 660-acre Horticulture and Agroforestry Research Center. The center is the U.S. National Arboretum Midwest Plant Research and Education Site and also serves as a location for North Central Region Ornamental Evaluation Trials.

An additional feature of HARC is that it is the site of one of Missouri's oldest standing brick homes, the Thomas Hickman House, built in 1819.

Interdisciplinary cooperation at HARC allows researchers from several departments including entomology, plant pathology, horticulture, forage crops and agroforestry to combine knowledge and research efforts to address a more diverse array of topics.

Hugo Wurdack Farm

  • 1.200 acres near Steelville, Mo.
  • University MU Extension demonstration farm.
  • Integrated farm management system: forage production, livestock production, forest management and wildlife management.

Missouri Climate Center

The Missouri Climate Center, located in 113 Waters Hall, provides valuable climate data and information to public officials, educational institutions, corporations, and private citizens in the state.

The Center uses data sources from its own archives and from national and international observation networks. Databases are from original manuscript records, published paper records and computerized data records.

  • Automated weather stations in 30 Missouri locations with real-time weather conditions in 18 Missouri locations.
  • Monthly and seasonal climate impact summaries for Missouri
  • Partnership with MU Extension providing daily weather forecasts and impacts on Missouri agriculture.
  • Historical weather and climate information.

Missouri Tree-Ring Laboratory

Missouri Tree-Ring Laboratory

The Missouri Tree-Ring Laboratory, located in room 21 of the Anheuser Busch Building, is equipped to process and analyze tree cores, cross sections and other woody material.

The tree ring chronologies developed in the MTRL have important applications to ecology, climatology, archaeology and history.

  • Climate history.
  • Fire history.

Prairie Fork Conservation Area

The Prairie Fork Conservation Area is a 711-acre farm donated by Ted and Pat Jones to the Missouri Department of Conservation to become a conservation area used as a natural laboratory for teaching the public, especially children, about natural resources.

Prairie Fork Conservation Area

The donor requested that the area be used especially to develop innovative programs of research and teaching in the areas of natural history and conservation. A generous endowment provides operating funds.

Located in Calloway County, 35 miles east of the University of Missouri-Columbia campus, the Prairie Fork Conservation Area is readily accessible for faculty and student projects. Faculty and students in the School of Natural Resources have full access to the Prairie Fork Conservation Area for teaching in an outdoor laboratory setting, as well as for various types of environmental research projects.

Quantitative Silviculture Laboratory

The Quantitative Silviculture Laboratory, located in room 15 of the Anheuser-Busch Building, develops projects to improve silviculture and forest management. This is done through the development of quantitative tools, publications, short courses and college courses.

Sanborn Field

Sanborn Field

Sanborn Field was founded in late 1888 by Dean J. W. Sanborn to demonstrate the value of crop rotations and manure in grain crop production. The field, located on the University of Missouri campus on the corner of College and Rollins, is the oldest reseach field west of the Mississippi river.

  • A long-term research field with more than 100 years of soil and crop management activities.
  • Four uses: documentation, research, demonstration and teaching.

Schnabel Arboretum Tract

The Schnabel Arboretum Tract is an 80-acre tract of old-growth forest on the bluffs overlooking the Missouri River. It is located eight miles southwest of the MU campus near the river community of McBaine, adjacent to the Missouri Department of Conservation Eagle Bluff Wetlands Area and the cross-state Katy Trail State Park.

The Schnabel Tract represents a unique, relatively undisturbed example of a river-hills forest ecosystem complex more commonly found in geographic settings further north. It has serve for many years as a site for undergraduate instruction, graduate research and demonstration.

  • Used for undergraduate instruction, graduate research and demonstrations.
  • Source of more than 125 publications since 1938.
  • Gaylord Memorial Laboratory.
  • Provides graduate education in resource management in partnership with the Missouri Department of Conservation.
  • Focus on technology development and interactions among wetland wildlife and their habitats.

Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory

The Spatial Data Analysis Laboratory, located in room 109 of the Anheuser-Busch Building, is a state-of-the-art GIS software teaching facility. Equipped with 25 student computers loaded with ESRI's latest software, the Spatial Data Analysis Lab has computer overhead projection, printing and data server storage capabilities.

Thomas S. Baskett Wildlife Research and Education Center

The Baskett Wildlife Area, formerly known as the Ashland Wildlife Research Area, is a 2,252-acre facility located five miles east of Ashland Mo., on Highway Y.

In use since 1938, Baskett has become an integral part of the School of Natural Resources mission of teaching, research and extension. The Baskett Wildlife Area is used as an outdoor laboratory for several classes including dendrology, ornithology, and resource measurements, and has been the source of more than 125 publications.

  • Undistrubed example of a river-hills forest ecosystem.
  • Home to extensive animal behavior research.
MO Flux tower

The University of Missouri, Environmental Sciences Division of Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Atmospheric Turbulence and Diffusion Division of NOAA are collaborating on a research project that measures the carbon and water balance of Missouri's oak-hickory forests on a large scale. This Department of Energy-funded study, an addition to an existing network of "Ameriflux" sites, employs a 106 foot tower above the canopy of oak-hickory forest.

Mounted on the tower are sophisticated meteorological instruments to measure temperatures, humidity, wind direction and speed, CO2 and water vapor content above the canopy ten times per second in a technique known as eddy covariance analysis. These data can be used to estimate the CO2 and water vapor exchange of up to 250 acres of forest, giving an ecosystem-level answer to when forests are sources and sinks of CO2.

The project will undertake comparative studies with other AmeriFlux sites to examine how CO2 uptake (by photosynthesis) and release (by respiration) change along important climate and vegetation gradients. Also supported by the project are on-going, long-term successional studies at the BREA to document historical forest development and forest dynamics at the site.

One of the unique advantages of this site is that it is located in the Ozark border region of south-central Missouri, an ecologically important transitional zone between the central hardwood forest region and the central grassland region of the United States. It also provides for sampling oak-hickory forests that are more xeric than the nearest deciduous forest sister sites in eastern Indiana and at the Walker Branch Watershed site of Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee.

If you would like to conduct research on the Baskett Area, you must fill out and submit the Research Study Plan for approval before you begin your research.

University Forest

University Forest is located at the southeast edge of the Missouri Ozarks, 14 miles north of Poplar Bluff and just south of Lake Wappapello. It is uniquely situated at the junction of three major forest ecosystem types: upland oak-hickory, oak-shortleaf pine and Mississippi Delta bottomland hardwoods.

University Forest

Using the adjacent 7,000-acre University State Forest managed by the Missouri Department of Conservation, University Forest serves as a regional environmental education center. This area is used routinely by the faculty and students of the School of Natural Resources as an off-campus field station for undergraduate and graduate classes and research.

University Forest has comfortable, modern cabins, a classroom and meeting center, dining hall, and recreational facilities that blend aesthetically into the surrounding hardwood forest. Housing and meals are available on site for 60 guests.

  • Long-term studies of hydrological watersheds, controlled burns and a continuous forest inventory.
  • Home of the six-week Forestry Summer Camp.

Back to Top