MN Backyard Science (MBS) is run by John Benning, an evolutionary ecologist living in Minneapolis.
MBS is based on a few observations:
- Habitat is declining for native insect and plant communities, largely due to development
- Yards (urban or rural) can easily host native plants that attract lots of different native insects
- There is plenty of space for high quality habitat in yards, but most of that space is covered by (boring) lawn grasses
- Kids have few opportunities for hands-on, long-term engagement with science and nature
* The predecessor of MBS, City Backyard Science, was funded by a UMN Institute on the Environment Mini Grant in 2019, with collaborator Amanda Gorton. CBS worked with a dozen households in Minneapolis to install native habitat and provide engaging natural history curricula for kids.