National marine sanctuary offices and visitor centers closed to the public; waters remain open

NOAA's national marine sanctuary offices and visitor centers are currently closed to the public, and in accordance with Executive Order 13991 - Protecting the Federal Workforce and Requiring Mask Wearing, all individuals in NOAA-managed areas are required to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance on mask-wearing and maintaining social distances. Sanctuary waters remain open for responsible use in accordance with CDC guidance, U.S. Coast Guard requirements, and local regulations. More information on the response from NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries can be found on

Ecological Monitoring

Assessing Change, Determining Effectiveness, Guiding Long-Term Management of the Sanctuary’s Natural Communities

vessel photos

Three broad goals of monitoring are to establish baseline data, record changes in resources and evaluate effectiveness of the Marine Protected Areas Network. Information gathered from monitoring activities helps determine the effects the MPAs are having on the ecological relationships, biological communities and habitats within the MPA Network and the sanctuary.

State MPA Research and Monitoring

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) leads statewide efforts to implement, monitor, and manage California's statewide coastal network of MPAs, pursuant to the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA), Marine Managed Areas Improvement Act, and other relevant California legislation such as the Marine Life Management Act and California Ocean Protection Act, and as directed by a master plan for MPAs.  CDFW staff work with key partners, such as the  MPA Monitoring Enterprise (a program of the  California Ocean Science Trust),  California Ocean Protection Council, and  California Sea Grant to provide oversight on all aspects of MPA research, monitoring, evaluation, and reporting to inform adaptive management.  For more information:

MPA Network Effectiveness the First Five Years (2003 to 2008)

The Sanctuary, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Channel Islands National Park and the Partnership for Interdisciplinary Studies of Coastal Oceans (PISCO) at the University of California, Santa Barbara sponsored a public symposium on the first five years of monitoring, enforcement and education programs for the Channel Islands Marine Protected Area Network.
For the report click here.

Deepwater Biological Monitoring:
To protect deep water habitats and ecological communities the State MPAs were extended by NOAA in 2006 and 2007, respectively. To better understand these areas requires special equipment, expertise, complicated logistics, and funding. NOAA hosted a workshop in 2005 to develop a framework for a deepwater monitoring plan.
For the workshop report click here.adobe logopdf

Partners in Monitoring:

PISCO – Partnership for Interdisciplinary Studies of Coasts and Oceans

California Ocean Science Trust MPA Monitoring Enterprise

Channel Islands National Park – Kelp Forest Monitoring Program

Marine Applied Research & Exploration



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