History and Facilities
The Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Corpus Christi was officially opened in February, 1974, and formally dedicated in May, 1974. The Center is located on 57 acres of land donated by Mrs. Ruth Weil in memory of her late husband Sylvan Weil. An additional 50 acres, leased from H.L. Weil Properties, and 72 acres leased from Michael T. Meaney, et. al., comprise the land research area.
The headquarters office building extends over 14,275 square feet of floor space and provides accommodations for some 40 Research and Extension faculty and support staff. The Research personnel at the Center include five project leaders (one of which is the Resident Director) plus support staff. The Center is headquarters for Texas AgriLlife Extension District 11, comprising 18 counties in the Coastal Bend Region. Two district extension directors for county agricultural and family and consumer sciences programs, 10 subject matter extension specialists and 9 support staff are co-located at the Center headquarters. One specialist is located on the Texas A&M University—Corpus Christi campus.
The headquarters building has 26 offices, three laboratories, two classrooms, one conference room and an auditorium. Two fiberglass greenhouses, one glass greenhouse, a 1500 sq.ft. headhouse servicing the three greenhouses, a large metal building (7800 sq. ft.) housing four offices, five laboratories, a farm shop and automobile storage area, plus a separate soils processing building of 750 sq.ft. and a pesticide storage and clean-up facility (1,250 sq.ft.) with associated reinsate storage and evaporative tanks, comprise the outlying structures.
Personnel and Resources
The Center is administratively responsible for the research of three satellite stations located at Beeville, Flour Bluff, and Port Aransas. These include the research program of four scientists and support staff at the AgriLife Research Station-Beeville focusing on beef cow reproduction, forages, and weed science, three scientists and nine support staff at the AgriLife Research Mariculture Laboratories located in Port Aransas and Flour Bluff, and five scientists plus fourteen support personnel focusing on crops research at the Center headquarters in Corpus Christi.
These twelve scientists consisting of animal nutritionists, economists, entomologists, plant pathologists, plant and animal physiologists, soil scientists, and weed scientists address the research problems facing south Texas agriculture and related renewable natural resources industries (recreation and wildlife management).
Collaboration involves joint faculty appointments with the College of Science and Technology, Texas A&M University—Corpus Christi, and with the College of Agriculture and Human Resources at Texas A&M University—Kingsville. Collaborative research is also carried out with faculty located at other agricultural research and extension centers and in Texas A&M University campus-based departments. Technology transfer is done in collaboration with Extension specialists co-located at the Corpus Christi Center and on the Texas A&M University campus.
Extension specialists carry out demonstration research, educational and technology transfer programs in agronomy, computers, economics, ecotourism, entomology, environment and natural resources, livestock production and management, seafood marketing, range and wildlife management, and risk management.
The research program at the Center and its satellite stations operates through a $3.6 million budget for 2002-03, and physical assets amounting to 1,380 acres of land and facilities valued at $4.1 million.
Priority Research Programs
Priority subject-matter programs are characterized by high levels of research productivity, external grant support, multidisciplinary/multiunit dimensions, and strong linkages between research, extension and graduate education.
Animal and plant production systems
Beef cow reproduction; reproduction, nutrition, ecology, disease control, and growout systems for marine shrimp; integrated and sustainable crop, animal, and range resource management systems; agrochemical management strategies.
Competitiveness in a Global Economy
Farm and ranch firm management decision-aids; economic risk management; economic costs and benefits of agricultural technologies.
Environment and Natural Resources
Soil quality and conservation techniques; water quality management strategies for crop and animal production; nitrogen management; South Texas weather station network.
Biological, Physical, Social, and Economic Processes
Mathematical modeling of plant growth, soil, water, insects, and plant damage relationships; computerized integrated crop and insect management decision models; computerized economic decision aids.
Texas A&M AgriLife Research & Extension Center
10345 Hwy 44
Corpus Christi, TX 78406