"reef fish refuge"
East London, Eastern Cape
A refuge for special reef fish, such as red steenbras, seventy-four, black musselcracker and dageraad.
This 246.5 km2 MPA consists of three small areas; Gxulu (between the Gxulu River and Christmas Rock), Gonubie (between Gonubie Point and Nahoon Point) and Kei (between the Kei and the Nyara River). These were originally proclaimed as closed fishing areas in late 1980s by the local ski-boat fishing fraternity and later proclaimed as the Amathole MPA in 2011. This primary aim of this MPA complex is to protect the endemic reef fish, such as red steenbras, seventy-four, black musselcracker and dageraad, which have all been heavily overexploited. Recent research noted that to increase the effectiveness of these areas, protection needed to be extended offshore to include deep rocky reefs. This led to the design and establishment of the Amathole Offshore MPA. Managed by the Eastern Cape Parks and Tourism Agency, this MPA primarily restricts offshore boat-based fishing. Boats passing through must stow fishing gear and may not stop in the MPA, except when launching or beaching. The MPA only protects the offshore marine areas and excludes the shore and estuaries. Shore-based angling, spearfishing and bait collecting activities are allowed in parts of the MPA.
protects endemic reef fish
strong support from the local ski-boat fishing community