Please keep in mind this short list of important facts regarding Marine Reserves ~

  • The MLPA is based on Science.
  • Our once abundant coastal ocean needs to be restored.  Abalone, bull lobster, giant sea bass, and large sheepshead, for example, are now seldom seen.
  • Only 12% of California’s southern coast is being considered for marine reserves.  It is a small portion of the coast with enormous benefit to the citizens of California.
  • State Law requires the MLPA be reviewed every 5 years.  At that time, reserves can be eliminated, modified or continued.  Public input and scientific data will be used in the evaluation. 
  • Laguna’s rich marine habitats make it a valuable and critical part of the network of reserves.
  • Laguna residents and visitors can fish from Crystal Cove north to Palos Verdes and to the south from Laguna to San Clemente.  Fishermen would need to drive only 10 minutes in either direction to continue to fish –a small inconvenience when you consider the benefits and potential restoration of our fisheries.
  • All current recreational and beach related activities are allowed in a reserve with the exception of the killing of marine life.  This includes activities such as kayaking, surfing, skim boarding, boating, diving, walking on the beach and playing in the surf.
  • Marine Reserves work.  After 5 years, lobsters are 6 times more abundant in the Channel Islands.  There are almost three times more fish in the reserve than outside the reserve.     
  • Critical fish species utilize the reserves.  Of 4 fish species tagged and studied (California sheephead, kelp bass, cabezon and giant sea bass), the California sheephead remained in the reserve 95% of the time, Cabezon and kelp bass stayed in the reserve 73% and 77% of the time, respectively.  These fish help to rebalance the health of our ocean. 
  • Laguna Ocean Foundation’s program of more than 200 trained tidewater docents as well as our marine safety officer and lifeguards will be a major help when monitoring Laguna’s marine reserve.  Non-profit organizations including the OC Marine Protected Area Council (OMPAC), OC Coastkeeper and the County will be instrumental in the implementation of the reserve and provide offshore enforcement with boats.