Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

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Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

IRL Species Inventory welcome image

The Smithsonian Marine Station is located on the Indian River Lagoon (IRL), a 156-mile estuary that is home to one of the most diverse assemblages of estuarine plants and animals in the United States. In 1997, we became the depository for the Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory - an extensive taxonomic listing of the protists, plants and animals that occur in the local lagoonal system.  Since that time, we have greatly expanded the species inventory and will continue to do so with a goal of promoting public awareness and the need for stewardship of the IRL as an invaluable marine resource.

The Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory has proven to be of increasing use to students, the public and scientific community, and we encourage you to explore this dynamic, ever-growing online database.

Local Environmental Data

Weather Tower Detailed report on environmental data at SMS

*Current Water and Weather Data
In 2006, we began monitoring the water quality at our dock just south of the Fort Pierce Inlet in the Indian River Lagoon. In mid-2009, we installed a 25' tower with meteoro-logical sensors to record weather data. The water and weather data is recorded continually, and is posted every 10 minutes.

*Detailed Environmental Data
View and download our water quality and meteorologi-cal data including 24-hour reports, recent (weekly) readings, and all archived data.

Webcams Views of Activity in our Ecosystems Exhibit!

Our webcams are currently offline due to technical difficulties. We apologize for any inconvenience.

We have placed underwater webcams in two of our five ecosystem aquaria at the Smithsonian Marine Ecosystems Exhibit and a webcam on a microscope in our support laboratory so that you can watch the interactions among those marine plants and animals.

Mac Users, if you have problems viewing these videos, please download and install Flip4Mac and then click the Direct Link below the video window.

Here's What's Happening in Our Coral Reef Ecosystem Tank

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Between 10pm and 2am Eastern Time, we light the the coral reef ecosystem tank with red lights; it's a great time to check out nocturnal reef life like brittle stars, secretive fishes, and worms!

Here's what's happening in Our Seagrass Tank

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Here's What's Under Our Microscope (in operation 10AM - 4PM Eastern Time)

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Under the Microscope: Baby brine shrimp
Baby brine shrimp hatch out of their eggs after approximately 24 hours. At the Aquarium, we feed live baby brine shrimp to our small fishes as a substitute for plankton, which they would feed on in the wild. In nature, the babies develop into adults in around eight days. In their adult stage, brine shrimp can produce up to 300 young every four days!






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