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Discovery Starts Here

  • Housed at the Marine Science Institute in Port Aransas, Texas.
  • First marine laboratory on the Gulf Coast, established in 1941.
  • First to spawn redfish, flounder, croaker and cobia in captivity.
  • Manages the Mission-Aransas National Estuarine Research Reserve, which at 186,189 acres is the third largest estuarine reserve in the nation.
  • Science and the SeaTM radio program is heard on 341 affiliates in 49 states and in 52 countries.
  • Manages two visitor education facilities and associated trails for the public: the Patton Marine Science Education Center in Port Aransas and the Bay Education Center in Rockport.
  • Developing a new Center for Coastal Ocean Science to study and teach marine chemical ecology and toxicology.
  • Leads Texas in mapping of seagrass. Over 95% of the seagrass on our coast has been characterized.
  • Manages the Beaufort Sea Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) program along the northern Alaskan Arctic coastline in the Beaufort Sea that focuses on understanding long-term changes in Arctic ecosystems.
  • Scientists bring in more than $2 for every $1 the state spends on the institute.
  • Amos Rehabilitation Keep rescues and rehabilitates thousands of animals annually.

The Marine Science Institute is dedicated to understanding and sharing our knowledge of the world's oceans and coasts - critical ecosystems for the health and future of humanity and the earth.


554 Undergraduate majors
47 Graduate
Enrollment (2020)

Senior science staff

16 Faculty
8 Research Associates
10 Postdoctoral Fellows
1 Ramón Margalef Award for Excellence in Education
1 Sloan Fellow
1 National Academies of Sciences Gulf Research Program Fellow
1 William R. and Lenore Mote Eminent Scholar Chair in Fisheries Ecology and Enhancement
1 Lifetime contribution awardee from North American Society of
Comparative Endocrinology
1 Early Career Investigator in Marine Microbial Ecology and Evolution Award


Administration - 9
Support - 75


Red tide / Oil spills / Drug Development Biodiversity / Land-ocean linkages Larval fish ecology /Climate trends / Hypoxia and dead zones / Fish migration / Captive spawning / Ciguatera / Ocean acidification / Nitrogen fixation / Biodiversity

Affiliated Centers

Mission-Aransas National Estuarine Research Reserve

Beaufort Sea Long Term Ecological Research (LTER)