school of fish behind title Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary
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Close up view of Christmas tree worms protruding from a coral head

Welcome to a very special place...

Picture yourself over 100 miles from land, in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico. At times, the seas can be very unforgiving, and the weather can turn foul in an instant. But here, in the midst of this unpredictable Gulf, lie three of the most beautiful and wild places in all the world. Manta rays, whale sharks, coral heads bigger than cars, hundreds of species of fish and invertebrates... This place teems with life!

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NOAA Corps officer Jamie Park standing on the dock next to the bow of R/V MANTA.

Most people don't realize that NOAA has its own uniformed service called the NOAA Corps.

NOAA Corps officers operate ships, fly aircraft, lead mobile field parties, conduct diving operations, manage research projects, and serve in staff positions throughout NOAA.

One of those staff positions is here at Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. Learn more about the sanctuary's NOAA Corps officers and their unique job experiences.

Ocean Discovery Day A Crowd Pleaser!

Visitors helped us recreate this mural on March 12th.

The annual Ocean Discovery Day open house at the NOAA Galveston Lab was another rousing success! Over 4,000 people visited us on Saturday, March 12th to paint a coral reef mural, see live sea turtles, explore coral reefs, learn how to save dolphins, run an obstacle course, discover maritime history, and more!

If you didn't get to visit with us this year, stay tuned for next year's date. We'll post it here, to the website Calendar of Events, as soon as it's decided.

In the meantime, you can see images from the event or sign up for one of our email lists to stay up to date with sanctuary happenings.

See 2016 Ocean Discovery Day Photos

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Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary
4700 Avenue U, Building 216
Galveston, TX 77551
p) 409-621-5151
f) 409-621-1316

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French angelfish in foreground; large boulder corals in background.  French angelfish is dinner plate size oval shaped, blue body with body scales bright yellow on their edges.
National Marine Sanctuary logo - a stylized whale tail above waves