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Harvard Forest, Petersham

#127 of 156 in Nature in Massachusetts
Harvard Forest is an ecological research area of 3000acre owned and managed by Harvard University and located in Petersham, Massachusetts. The property, in operation since 1907, includes one of North America's oldest managed forests, educational and research facilities, a museum, and recreation trails. Harvard Forest is open to the public.
Harvard University conducts forest biology and conservation research on the property, including two major programs: the Long Term Ecological Research LTER program, funded by the National Science Foundation and established in 1988 to investigate New England's natural ecosystem; and the National Institute of Global Environmental Change program established and funded by the United States Department of Energy and emphasizing the study of physical and biological processes in relation to climate change. Harvard Forest is also slated to be the northeastern core site of the National Ecological Observatory Network. A number of smaller research programs are also conducted in Harvard Forest.
The Fisher Museum, open on weekends, offers exhibits on current research as well as twenty-three model dioramas portraying the history, conservation and management of New England woodlands. A sixty-seat lecture hall is located in the museum.
To visit Harvard Forest on your trip to Petersham, use our Petersham trip planning app .
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Harvard Forest Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
7 reviews
  • This is a managed forest. I had no idea what that meant but now I do- kind of... it's a complex process. The Fisher Museum, which is on location and free, has amazing dioramas depicting the land use s...  more »
  • Great resource for local land and forest use history. Harvard Forest surrounding tracts are part of the research forest of Harvard University. Museum has exhibits showing local environment over the pa...  more »
  • Full of life, what a beautiful place to be!
  • Lots of hiking trails

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