The Highlands Biological Station (HBS) was founded in 1927 as a small private research facility by a group of amateur and professional biologists and concerned citizens in the Highlands, North Carolina area. In the mid-1970s The Station was acquired by the University of North Carolina and is now administered on behalf of the university system by Western Carolina University. At that time the original non-profit research laboratory was reorganized into the Highlands Biological Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization that remains closely associated with HBS.

One of the core missions of the Highlands Biological Station is to promote scientific research, and there is a long history of Station-related research available here.

Information for Researchers

We are excited you’re considering making the Station part of your research! Please review the information below to ensure that our facilities meet your needs. For more information or to make a reservation, please email us at

Permits and Documentation

Your team will need to ensure that all required documentation and permits are on file prior to your arrival. Click here for more information on permitting and IACUC requirements. If you’re still unsure what documentation you’ll need, contact our Executive Director ( or Associate Director (

On-Site Facilities

We have a variety of on-site housing options to meet your needs and budget. In addition, we have multiple lab spaces, ranging from private offices to a molecular lab. Finally, please review our selection of research equipment to make your trip a success!

Field Sites

In addition to research sites at the Station, we are also able to coordinate research on nearby field sites through the generosity of our local partners. Please note that these are not generally open to the public, and our partners may have additional stipulations.

Financial Aid

Thanks to the generosity of the Foundation, we are able to offer a limited number of financial awards to faculty and graduate students to complete their research in or around Highlands. For more information on this program, visit the GIA page.

To be notified of updates regarding research opportunities at the Station, please fill out the form below. By clicking subscribe you agree to be added to our email list. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Subscribe to HBS Updates

* indicates required
Select any that you're interested in: