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 185,708 acres is the third largest estuarine reserve in the nation.
  • Science and the SeaTM radio program is heard on 180 affiliates in 41 states and in 52 countries.
  • 10,000 K–12 school children, 50 K–12 teachers and 25,000–30,000 visitors to Visitor's Center annually.
  • Received $6.77 million Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative Grant to understand how oil spill disperses in the Gulf of Mexico and how it affects the Gulf ecology.
  • Discovered dispersants applied to Deepwater Horizon oil are more toxic to Gulf of Mexico food web than oil alone.
  • Leading study that will further identify critical habitat in the Arctic’s Chukchi Sea to help the oil industry minimize impact on the local ecology from off-shore drilling.
  • Scientists bring in more than $5 for every $1 the state spends on the institute.
  • Animal 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.


458 Undergraduate
28 Graduate
Enrollment (2012-13)


14 faculty
1 Regent's Outstanding Teaching Award
1 James Centorino Award for Marine Education
1 Texas Aquaculture Association Researcher of the Year (won two times)
10 post-doctoral fellows


Administration - 9
Support - 75


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

Affiliated Centers

Mission-Aransas National Estuarine Research Reserve