The Center for Sportfish Science and Conservation
CSSC is the first research center in the western Gulf dedicated to providing science-based information that supports sustainable management of our multi-billion dollar recreational fishery.
Effective conservation and management of sportfish requires a robust scientific knowledge-base to be most effective. The mission of the Center for Sportfish Science and Conservation is to advance knowledge of marine sportfish and promote conservation through science-based fisheries management. The CSSC is as a hub for scientists interested in marine fisheries research focused on the many challenges that come with maintaining healthy sportfish populations, both inshore and offshore, to ensure the most informed decisions are made when managing and conserving our valuable fisheries and the marine environment they inhabit.
Established at the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies (HRI) at Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi in fall 2012, the CSSC goal is to provide the research needed to make informed decisions in the management of fisheries and conservation. The CSSC was originally made possible through a generous $500,000 donation from the Coastal Conservation Association - Texas, a nonprofit organization formed by a small group of Texas fishermen in 1977 to conserve, promote and enhance Texas’ rich coastal fisheries resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the public. In addition, HRI contributed more than $300,000 to build an offshore research vessel, provide state-of-the-art laboratory space and facilities, and purchase other supporting equipment such as new vehicles. In November 2013, the CSSC was approved by the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents.
Since the formation, the CSSC has expanded rapidly and formed many key partnerships with the general public and private and State/Federal Agencies. This support and growth coupled with HRI’s leadership in fisheries sciences around the Gulf with its unique interdisciplinary research teams has allowed the CSSC and its scientists to become recognized leaders in fisheries conservation and management across the Gulf of Mexico and nationally.