Photo credit: ShoreZone
Location: The Cape Falcon Marine Reserve is Oregon’s northern most site, situated adjacent and north of the popular Oswald West State Park. The second largest in Oregon’s Marine Reserve network, the reserve includes 12.4 square miles of ocean habitat and the two complementary Marine Protected Areas include an additional 7.6 square miles.
Access points: Oswald West State Park (Short Sands beach) is a great recreational beach that sits shoreside of the southern portion of this marine reserve. Trails from and around the north portion of Oswald West state park will offer other views of the marine reserve.
Regulations - Harvest restrictions are in effect as of January 1, 2016
2014-2015 monitoring is underway - reports available in 2017
Cape Falcon Map (ODFW), including marine reserve boundaries and harvest restrictions
Dozens of trails through the adjacent state park provide for dramatic views of the Marine Reserve and Cape’s wildlife. Over 20 seabird colonies with thousands of nesting birds can be found in this area including over 16,000 common murres in addition to black oystercatchers, marbled murrelets and bald eagles. With their sheltering nooks and crannies, the large, rocky reefs and gravel and soft bottom habitats around Cape Falcon are home to a rich array of plants and animals like rockfish and halibut. This Marine Reserve site includes the deepest habitat of all sites, hosting plants and animals that require cold deep water to feed and breed, and helping Oregon’s marine reserve network provide more comprehensive protection for diverse wildlife and habitats.
The range of ecological benefits expected for this site as originally proposed included:
The coastal and ocean waters around Tillamook head and Cape Falcon, including the rocky reef habitat, productive intertidal habitat, important bird and mammal areas, and deep offshore habitats make these important ecological areas in Oregon's Territorial Sea. This site was designated as one of 31 important ecological areas off Oregon's coast because of its unique physical and biological features representative of high biodiversity, critical habitat for threatened and endangered species, habitats important for breeding, feeding and shelter, and sensitive and rare habitats.
The Oregon Marine Reserves Partnership is a fiscally sponsored project of The Ocean Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization.