The Dauphin Island Sea Lab was founded in 1971 by the Alabama legislature to provide marine science programs for many of the state’s colleges and universities. Today, 22 member institutions partner with the Dauphin Island Sea Lab to provide studies to undergraduate and graduate students. Since 1971, the DISL mission has expanded to include K-12 education, professional development, and a public aquarium.
The Alabama Marine Environmental Sciences Consortium (MESC) is comprised of 22 public and private colleges and universities. The Presidents of each school make up the MESC Board of Directors. The Program Committee members consist of one faculty member, appointed by the President, from each of the member institutions.
The Dauphin Island Sea Lab Foundation (DISLF) supports the Dauphin Island Sea Lab in its mission, “to provide wise stewardship of the marine environment through education and research”. The DISLF provides funds to sustain the activities and programs of the Dauphin Island Sea Lab. The foundation is also continuing to build the George C. Crozier Endowment, as well as the DISLF Endowment for the Dauphin Island Sea Lab.
The mission of the Mobile Bay NEP is to promote wise stewardship of the water quality characteristics and living resource base of the Mobile Bay estuarine system. Administered through and funded by the EPA under provisions of the Clean Water Act (CWA) of 1987, the initial task for the MBNEP was the development of a Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan (CCMP) as a blueprint for conserving the estuary.
While the DISL serves as the focal point of graduate education in marine science in the state of Alabama, it is not a degree-granting institution, and graduate degrees are offered through ten of the 23 DISL Member Schools.
University Programs hosts a seminar series throughout the year on campus. The Sea Lab faculty invite researches from around the world to speak about their work. The majority of seminars are streamed live and archived on The Sea Lab’s YouTube channel.
Since 1971, the Dauphin Island Sea Lab researchers have collected valuable environmental and ecosystem level data as part of the research and monitoring efforts in the fields of oceanography and ecology.
ARCOs, Alabama Real-Time Coastal Observing System, is freely accessible by the public with ten sites monitoring the water quality. The information is updated every half hour and is gathered from eight water quality sampling stations that are located around coastal Alabama, including a new site off-shore.
The Dauphin Island Sea Lab (DISL) provides scientific diver training and oversight for all participating schools with the Marine Environmental Sciences Consortium. DISL joined the American Academy of Underwater Science in 1992.
A Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative consortia led by the Dauphin Island Sea Lab, the Alabama Center of Ecological Resilience (ACER) investigates how biodiversity influences an ecosystem’s resilience. Specifically, the ecosystems of the northern Gulf of Mexico to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
The Alabama Aquarium at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab hosts a number of events for the public. The free, twice-monthly Boardwalk Talk program offers the public a chance to engage with the experts at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab. The Excursion Program takes visitors into the habitats studied by our marine scientists, researchers, and students at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab.
This unique seafood culinary art competition features area high school hospitality and culinary arts programs’ students transforming marine science education into delicious seafood dishes to enjoy throughout the evening.
From inviting breezes on the open decks to the unmatched visual exhibits of the fourth largest estuary system in the United States, the Estuarium at The Sea Lab is the perfect venue for your indoor or outdoor functions.
Climb aboard the Miss May May, and set sail for a birthday destination to remember. Both entertaining and educational, the adjacent aquatic and hands-on exhibits inside the Estuarium provide hours of excitement while guiding your child through a journey of our precious coastal habitat.
Learn more about manatees and the research led by
DISL's Manatee Sighting Network
To request Manatee Sighting Network data, please contact DISL/MSN manager Elizabeth Hieb at firstname.lastname@example.org. To avoid use conflicts and duplication of efforts, data requests will be processed under our established data sharing plan developed in collaboration with the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries and USFWS. We welcome requests such as the production of maps, data summaries, and figures for specific locations and time periods based on these data.
Manatee Sighting Maps - DISL's Manatee Sighting Network records hundreds of manatee sightings each year from across the US. Learn more about when and where we receive sightings and how many manatees travel to the northern Gulf of Mexico.
Dauphin Island Sea Lab's Manatee Sighting Network is not responsible for the content of websites linked to this site. These links are provided for informational purposes only. Please contact us directly at email@example.com if you have any questions.
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