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

It is unique because no-one has ever dragged a net over it – it has never been trawled. If we protect this special area we will be able to explore and understand our ocean better, we will find out just what the sea bed should look like, what animals live there and how the complex relationships between the sea bed, the animals and the plankton support the fish, like hake, that we catch and eat. Not only does this area aim to protect the sea bed, but it aims to protect the water above the sea bed, waters that are home to top predators such as sharks and where some of our incredible seabirds feed. Imagine a box almost 2000 km2 and between 250 and 1500 m deep – and imagine that this box of the ocean is protected. We benefit as this protection supports fisheries and builds our knowledge.



  • protects Only un-trawled shelf edge in region

  • Feeding grounds for threatened seabirds

  • Life history importance for sharks

  • Hake fishery eco-certification that has economic benefits & SUPPORTS food and job security