Texas Coastal Habitats Overview

Texas Coastal Habitats

The following web pages are derived from the graphic panels on exhibit at Sea Center Texas.

Coastal cities map
Map showing Houston, Galveston, Corpus Christi, Brownsville, Sea Center Texas, and the Gulf of Mexico

Coastal Waters Teem With Life

Marine animals and plants swim, crawl and grow in Texas bays and Gulf waters. You can find them in tide pools, salt marshes and coastal bays, along the jetties, in nearshore waters and out in the Gulf of Mexico.

These animals and the coastal habitats they live in are unique and valuable resources. With responsible use, we and the private and public interests that benefit from these resources can ensure that future generations may also enjoy Texas marine life.

Helping the Habitats

The Gulf Coast of Texas contains marshes, bays, jetties and open waters vital to many kinds of wildlife. Human activities, both visible, like trash on the beach, and invisible, like chemical runoff from fields, take their toll on these habitats.

As we become more aware of our impacts, people are making efforts to reduce and even reverse them. We're also setting aside parts of the coastline in reserves, refuges and parks, for the benefit of wildlife and people alike.

Overview habitats
Gulf Habitat cross-section showing Salt Marshes furthest inland, then Coastal Bays, The Jetty, Nearshore Waters and Gulf Waters

Home is Where the Habitat Is

Texas bays and Gulf waters are home to thousands of fish, shellfish, birds and other animals, all of which depend on the coast's diverse habitats for food and shelter. Humans, too, share the coast, building homes and ports, harvesting seafood and enjoying the many kinds of recreation the coast has to offer.

The animals that live along the Texas coast are part of the natural patterns of life in these habitats. Protecting these natural patterns preserves what we cherish about the coast.

Select a coastal habitat: