Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

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Florida with star for Ft. Pierce

(not open to the public)
701 Seaway Drive
Fort Pierce, FL 34949
Tel: 772-462-6220
Fax: 772-461-8154

420 Seaway Drive
Fort Pierce, FL 34949
Tel: 772-462-FISH





Homepage slideshow Who We Are...

The Smithsonian Marine Station (SMS) at Fort Pierce, Florida is a research center specializing in
marine biodiversity and ecosystems of Florida. Research focuses on the Indian River Lagoon and the offshore waters of Florida's east central coast, with comparative studies throughout coastal Florida.

The Station, a facility of the
National Museum of Natural History, is part of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, and serves as a field station which draws scientists and students from the Smithsonian and collaborating institutions around the world to investigate the plants, animals and physical processes in the ocean and Indian River Lagoon. Information uncovered at the Marine Station is published in scientific journals and forms the basis for effective public policies, conservation efforts, and resource management.

Dedicated to the "increase and diffusion of knowledge", the Marine Station offers online resources including the Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory and a public exhibit, the Smithsonian Marine Ecosystems Exhibit, which features aquaria that depict five local marine ecosystems, and many events and programs for the enjoyment and education of the public.

The Station also provides logistical and administrative management of the Caribbean Coral Reef Ecosystems Program (CCRE) based at the Carrie Bow Cay Field Station on the Meso-American Barrier Reef in Belize. SMS and CCRE are vital parts of the Smithsonian Marine Science Network.

Aerial view of the Smithsonian Marine Ecosystems Exhibit and the Smithsonian marine Station with labels

What's Happening at SMS (Visitors, Tours, Seminars, Etc...)



Male Stoplight Parrotfish

Current SMS Newsletter

Connecting Parrotfish Populations to Restore Reefs, MarineGEO Field Campaign, and MORE...


weather tower

Local Conditions at SMS

The Marine Station has been recording and posting water quality information from our dock location since 2006. We are now also providing continuous recordings of local atmospheric conditions. Instruments on a 25' weather tower are recording rainfall, temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction, UV radiation and total solar output, and the data is being fed to our website. Check out this online resource at Most Recent Weather and Water Info from SMS and Detailed Water Conditions at our Dock.

tour participant

Behind-the-Scenes Tour of the Research Station

Third Thursday of each month at 2PM - Free. Registration is required.

Once a month we open our doors to the public to share current Smithsonian research on the plants and animals of the Indian River Lagoon and marine environments throughout the Caribbean. Tours are approximately one hour in length and begin at 2pm in the Conference Room. Suggested age: 12+

Please register online by following this link: ONLINE REGISTRATION
Questions? Please contact Laura Diederick at diederick [at]

3-D lecture

Friday Afternoon Scientific Seminars

Our Friday afternoon scientific seminars are of a technical nature, geared toward members of the scientific community. They are held in the conference room of the Smithsonian Marine Station at 3:00 PM on Fridays (unless otherwise stated).

May 27 Francois Seneca, SMS Postdoctoral Fellow
Deciphering the Effects of Suspended Sediment on the Health of Scleractinian Corals Using Respirometry and Transcriptomics

Intern seining with students

SMS 2013/2014 Biennial Report

Learn more about the research and education activities of the Smithsonian Marine Station and Ecosystems Exhibit. For online viewing, click here. For a more printer-friendly version, click here.