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Partners Use New Lab Facility

Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission - Thursday, February 23, 2017

As an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage (DAH), the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission (ANHC) moved into offices at the newly constructed DAH headquarters in August 2016.

In past years, the ANHC’s research staff did not have an on-site lab facility. Space for mounting herbarium specimens, drying plants, storing aquatic specimens and the chemicals used to process them was limited. There wasn’t access to a large sink, so staff had to use a water hose outside our equipment storage facility for processing and cleaning. The ANHC’s new space includes a climate-controlled room for the herbarium, an aquatics wet-lab (including an industrial sink), and a collections processing area.

During the years that ANHC’s staff needed access to a lab and lab equipment, local partners, such as the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, often volunteered their space and use of their equipment. The ANHC is grateful for our partners and the many times that they were able to assist us. With the new facility, ANHC staff members have been able to offer space and the use of our equipment to local partners, in the same spirit of cooperation that we received for so many years.

Recently, our partners at the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department (AHTD) needed a space for staff botanists to process and mount plant specimens for their on-site reference collection. The ANHC was able to assist them, providing them with the space and equipment they needed. We look forward to hosting other partners in our lab.


Top left: The new DAH headquarters. The ANHC's offices, lab, and herbarium are located on the right side of the building.

At Right: Kayti Ewing, Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department botanist, uses the ANHC lab/collections processing area to mount a plant specimen.

Commissioners toured the facilities during their recent quarterly meeting. Row above, from left to right: Commissioners and guests tour the new herbarium space with ANHC botanists. Middle: Commissioner Lucian Gillham examines aquatic specimens in the wet-lab. Right: Aquatic Ecologist Jason Throneberry shows Commissioners aquatic specimens in the wet-lab. 


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