There’s More Beneath the Surface

The spirit of exploration is alive and well in Oregon. Only now, it’s underwater. Oregon’s five marine reserve sites are areas in the ocean dedicated to conservation and scientific research. In the reserves all ocean development and removal of marine life is prohibited. Management and scientific monitoring of the sites is overseen by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW).

5 Sites:  Learn about what a marine reserve is, where they are, and why we have marine reserves. We invite you to explore the Cape Falcon, Cascade Head, Otter Rock, Cape Perpetua, and Redfish Rocks sites and discover what lies beneath the surface.

For a state famous for exploration, we’ve only skimmed the surface of our ocean waters. Join us, as we study these areas and learn how to best maintain Oregon’s nearshore ocean resources. There’s a lot more of Oregon to explore.

See What’s New

Browse the Reserves News posts and explore the latest research, activities, and discoveries at the reserves GO →

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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get involved


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


Browse our latest Reserves News posts to see what’s happening. Go →


Get the latest updates and research highlights by signing up for our eNewsletter. Go →


There’s more beneath the surface. Check out our latest videos and photos here. Go →

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