MN Backyard Science (MBS) is run by John Benning, an evolutionary ecologist living in Minneapolis.

MBS is based on a few observations:

  1. Habitat is declining for native insect and plant communities, largely due to development
  2. Yards (urban or rural) can easily host native plants that attract lots of different native insects
  3. There is plenty of space for high quality habitat in yards, but most of that space is covered by (boring) lawn grasses
  4. 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.