About Us

MLML Main Building

General Information

Director: Jim Harvey

Moss Landing Marine Labs:

Marine Science Education & Research


Moss Landing Marine Laboratories (MLML) administers the Master of Science in marine science program for California State Universities in northern and central California, and is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in both education and research.  An outfitted marine operations department, active research diving program and state of the art equipment allow for cutting edge research in a wide variety of disciplines including: marine ecology; the biology of marine plants, invertebrates, fishes, turtles, birds and mammals; oceanography and marine geology; chemistry and biogeochemistry.  MLML is known for a hands-on, field-oriented approach which places our students, faculty, researchers and staff at the frontiers of marine science worldwide where discoveries are being made.  MLML provides the skills and training so students become successful scientists, teachers and resource managers serving societal needs involving marine issues.

The lab is situated in an excellent location for the study of the marine world. The Monterey Submarine Canyon, the largest such feature on the west coast of North America, begins within a few hundred meters of the Moss Landing harbor and the MLML research fleet. To the east of MLML is the Elkhorn Slough, the largest tract of tidal salt marsh in California outside of San Francisco Bay, and an important site for shorebirds and fishes. To the north and south are sand dunes, sandy beaches, and extensive kelp forest habitats along the rocky shoreline. Some of the most productive kelp forests and intertidal areas can be found in this region. MLML also is located between two large upwelling centers, which provide nutrients that stimulate an incredible amount of productivity but also provide a wealth of opportunities to study coastal oceanic processes.

MLML Main Building

Go to Map and Directions Page

If driving from the Monterey Peninsula, take Highway 1 North. Turn left onto Moss Landing Road (1.7 miles after Castroville). MLML main lab building is located at 8272 Moss Landing Rd. on the left directly after the cemetery.

If driving from the Santa Cruz area, take Highway 1 South. Turn right onto Moss Landing Road (0.2 miles past the Duke Energy Power Plant). Continue straight through town past the antique stores and post office. MLML main lab building is located at 8272 Moss Landing Rd. on the right just before the cemetery.

The Road to MLML Shore Labs

Go to Map and Directions Page

Follow the directions above to Moss Landing Road. Take the bridge across Sandholdt Rd. (on the right if approaching from North, on the left if approaching from the South). MLML Small Boat/Diving Operations and Marine Operations is located on the right after the fish processing area (7539 Sandholdt Rd.). MLML Norte Facility is on the left across the street from Small Boat/Diving Operations (7544 Sandholdt Rd.). The MLML Aquaculture Building is located on the left side immediately after crossing the harbor bridge (7722 Sandholdt Rd.).

MLML Shore Facility "El Norte"

The Firehouse