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The University of Guam Marine Laboratory welcomes visiting scientists who wish to carry out research on Guam. Because the Lab has limited resources, we have developed certain policies for visiting investigators to enable us to schedule activities more efficiently. Students interested in pursuing a Masters degree at the Marine Lab can find information on applying to our graduate program by clicking on the link marked Students.


All visiting investigators should have a sponsor at the Lab. This can be any Marine Lab faculty member. Your sponsor will coordinate your visit with the Lab and will make arrangements for your stay on Guam. Please notify your sponsor as soon as possible of the dates you plan to be on Guam. When you have made your travel arrangements, notify your sponsor of your flight number and time of arrival so that you can be met at the airport. If you have last-minute changes in your flight schedule, please fax or phone your sponsor.

Getting to Marine Lab from the Airport

Exiting the airport onto Airport Road fronting the airport, turn right and continue until the intersection with Route 16. Turn right onto Route 16 and continue to Barrigada, then left onto Route 10. Follow Route 10 until Mangilao and turn left at Route 37 and the sign indicating the university. These maps should help:

Map of Guam

Map of university campus

The Marine Lab is open most weekdays from 0900 h to 1700 h. To make certain someone is available to assist you, please call ahead. Parking is free and is usually available in front of the Lab, otherwise, spaces can be found in adjacent parking lots.


Limited housing facilities for visiting scientists are available adjacent to the Marine Lab; reservations for these should be made in advance. The rates for the housing facility are $20.00/day or $400.00/month for a dormitory-style 2 twin-beds room and $20.00/day or $400.00/month for the apartment with two bedrooms having 2 twin beds. An up-front cleaning deposit of $50.00/stay is required. Hotels on the island run between $75 and $250/day and are far from the UOGML, necessitating a rental car. There are no hotels within walking distance of the Marine Lab.

Bench and equipment fees

Fees for bench use and basic equipment are $35/day, but reduced rates are available; inquire. Laboratory work space will be provided for visitors, as available. We have no special area set aside for visiting investigators, although we can usually accommodate you somewhere. The Marine Lab has a flow-through seawater system serving a large number of concrete and fiberglass holding tanks and glass aquaria. There are generally some available for use by visiting investigators. Please inform your sponsor of any particular equipment or supplies you will need for your research. He/she can tell you whether we have what you need or whether you will have to bring your own. Some expendable supplies may be available on a cost-reimbursable basis. Visitors are responsible for the disposal of chemical wastes generated.

Boat use

Our fee for boat use is the same rate we charge to our own projects, and about one-half (or less) the cost of a comparable commercial charter on Guam. We encourage visitors working on tight budgets (e.g., students) to hitch-hike on boat trips made by UOGML projects (which are frequent), in which case we charge them nothing.

The following policies apply to boat use by visiting investigators:

  1. On-going Marine Laboratory projects have first priority for the use of boats.

  2. Boats are available during regular working hours (8:00 – 5:00 Monday through Friday), unless special arrangements are made.  Use of boats on weekends and evenings will require extra load time and will cost more.

  3. Marine Lab Technicians are responsible for the safety of the boats and passengers and will determine whether boat trips are permissible on any given day.

  4. Marine Lab Technicians operate the larger boats (Tanguisson — 19 ft.; Boston Whaler — 21 ft.; McKee Craft — 14 ft).  Other qualified operators (to be determined by the Marine Technicians) may operate the McKee Craft within the confines of Apra Harbor and Cocos Lagoon.

  5. Alternatively, you are welcome to accompany other projects that use boats at no charge, if space is available and if your field activities are compatible with the scheduled project.  However, you should be prepared to pay for boat use if you require it for your research.

  6. Daily (8-hour) charges for use of the boats are as follows:


Charge (With Operator)





McKee Craft





Vehicle use

If you require a pickup truck for your field work, you may be able to use a Marine Lab vehicle for US$60.00/day, but first priority will be given to Lab requirements. If you anticipate a continuing need for a vehicle, you should arrange to rent one from a commercial rental agency.

Collecting and permits

The collection of many marine organisms is regulated on Guam, and some areas are closed to collecting. You are responsible for knowing these regulations, which can be obtained from the Guam Division of Aquatic and Wildlife Resources. Your sponsor may also be able to inform you of relevant regulations and help arrange for a permit, if you need one. The Marine Laboratory has several types of collecting permits, which may cover you if you are doing limited collecting; again, check with your sponsor. If you are visiting from outside the U.S. or its dependencies, you will also need additional permits to export any collected marine life; again, your sponsor can help arrange for these.


Masters candidate Jim Chamberlain collecting data in Apra Visiting investigators who plan to use scuba for their research while visiting the Marine Laboratory should bring their own personal dive gear or rent gear from one of the local dive shops. The Marine Lab can provide scuba tanks only, for US$5.00 per tank. The following policies apply to diving at the Marine Laboratory:

If you are currently certified for scuba diving at a university or research group with a recognized diving program (e.g., AAUS, University of California, University of Washington, University of Miami, NOAA, Smithsonian Institution, etc.), please bring your certification card, a log of recent dives made, and a summary of total dives. The Marine Laboratory is a member of the American Association of Underwater Scientists (AAUS). Our diving policies are given in the UOGML Dive Manual at the link below.

If you are not actively diving with a research diving program, you will need to bring evidence of a recent physical exam (within one year) done on an AAUS physical form (see below), a scuba certification card, and a summary of past and recent dives. All divers will be asked to fill out the medical-history portion of the form and sign the liability waiver. Divers may be asked to go on a check-out dive before beginning research diving with the Marine Laboratory equipment and facilities (this may be done on the first working dive). These policies must be followed before permission will be granted to use scuba with the University of Guam Marine Laboratory. You should contact the Diving Safety Officer, prior to your trip to make arrangements for diving.

Dive manual UOGML Dive Manual
This manual was prepared to conform with the safety standards of the American Academy of Underwater Sciences (AAUS), and it is based upon the AAUS Standards for Scientific Diving. Diving techniques or diving equipment not listed in this manual are ordinarily prohibited at the UOG Marine Laboratory. Additional diving techniques or equipment may be permitted only with the expressed approval of the DCB and only after the necessary safety guidelines are adopted by the UOG Diving Control Board and incorporated into the UOG Marine Laboratory diving standards manual.
Dive physical Dive Physical
Diving under the auspices of UOG Marine Laboratory is permitted only with a current diving physical examination and a declaration by the examining physician of the diver's fitness to dive. All medical exams required by this standard shall be performed by, or under the direction of a licensed physician of the applicant-diver's choice. It is recommended that the examining physician be trained in diving/undersea medicine.



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