There’s More Beneath the Surface

oregon-reservesOregon’s marine reserves are areas in our coastal waters dedicated to conservation and scientific research. 5 Sites:  The Cape Falcon, Cascade Head, Otter Rock, Cape Perpetua, and Redfish Rocks marine reserves are each named for local natural landmarks. Within the marine reserves all removal of marine life is prohibited, as is ocean development.

The Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife oversees the management and scientific monitoring of these areas. For a state famous for exploration, we’ve only skimmed the surface of our coastal waters. Join us, as we study these areas and learn how to best maintain Oregon’s coastal ocean resources for generations to come. There’s a lot more of Oregon to discover.

Cape Falcon

Oregon’s northernmost site, located next to the popular Oswald West State Park. Hiking trails provide views out over the reserve from atop the Cape.

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Cascade Head

Includes the north portion of the Siletz Reef, home to a wide variety of groundfish species including black rockfish, canary rockfish, lingcod, and kelp greenling.

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Otter Rock

Oregon’s smallest reserve, at 1.2 sq miles. Three offshore islands mark the west boundary. Visitors can explore tidepools, view seals hauled out onto the rocks, or stroll along the beach.

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Cape Perpetua

Home to some of the most biologically diverse rocky shores anywhere in the Pacific Northwest. Underwater you’ll find extensive soft bottom habitats and a deep, isolated rocky reef.

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Redfish Rocks

Five islands are visible from shore. Underwater is an extensive rocky reef. Kelp beds can be found between the islands and shore. These habitats support a diversity of fish, invertebrates, and seaweeds.

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Here are some ways you can get involved or keep tabs on what's happening in and around Oregon's marine reserves.

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Marine Reserves Enforcement: Here’s What’s Working…

Marine reserve implementation depends on enforcement and education, otherwise these are simply “paper parks,” with lines on a map. In Oregon, compliance rates tend to be relatively high among the reserve sites. This is due to a combination of factors, including the voluntary willingness of fishers to comply with the rules, along with education and outreach campaigns by the Oregon State Police (OSP), Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) and State Parks (OPRD). Read more to learn about what is working… Read More

We're Hiring: Ecological Research Project Leader

We are currently recruiting to fill our Ecological Research Project Leader position within the ODFW Marine Reserves Program. We are seeking a community ecologist with excellent knowledge and skill in ecological monitoring study design, field sampling techniques, and statistical analysis. This position is responsible for leading the ecological monitoring for Oregon’s marine reserves. Read More

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