Orange Shelf Edge MPA

"Orange Refuge"

Offshore of Port Nolloth, Northern Cape


The last piece of untrawled shelf edge on South Africa's West Coast

Imagine a box almost 2000 km2 and between 250 and 1500 m deep. This part of our ocean is unique because no-one has ever dragged a net over it – it has never been trawled. Proclaimed in 2019, this MPA allows for further research and exploration to help us understand the ocean better. It provides a glimpse into what a healthy seabed should look like, what animals live there and how the complex relationships between them support important fish like the hake that we depend on for food. Hence, this MPA is fundamental towards sustainable fisheries development. This MPA also protects the waters above the sea bed that are home to predators such as blue sharks, as well as surface waters where thousands of seabirds such as Atlantic yellow-nosed albatrosses feed.



  • protects Only un-trawled shelf edge in region

  • protects Feeding areas for threatened albatrosses

  • protects important areas for the Life history of pelagic sharks

  • maintains Hake fishery eco-certification, SUPPORTing food and job security