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    Why is a Marine Reserve important?

    A marine reserve provides a safe place for fish and other species to live and breed. The protection of habitats and species inside a reserve means reserves have higher biodiversity than unprotected areas.

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    Biodiversity is how many different types of living things are in an area. Places with high biodiversity are more resilient to disturbances than places with low biodiversity.

    For example, a healthy and biodiverse habitat is better prepared to adapt and withstand the impacts of rising ocean temperatures, ocean acidification, and other effects of climate change.


    Marine reserves play a crucial role in sustainable fishing. By providing safe areas where fish grow and breed undisturbed, fish populations within marine reserves increase in size and density. Excess fish moves into areas outside the reserve, benefiting both local communities and the fishing industry (“spillover” effect). 

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    Healthy habitat

    Marine reserves support healthy habitats. For example, kelp provides a home for many different sea creatures. Some sea creatures, like kina, like to eat kelp and others, like snapper and crayfish, like to eat kina. These natural trophic interactions are crucial for healthy and balanced habitats. But when snapper and crayfish are fished out of the ocean, there are fewer of them to eat kina. This means that kina can eat all the kelp, leaving behind bare rocks. In marine reserves, no fishing is allowed so snapper and crayfish can eat the kina and help the kelp grow, providing home to lots of different sea creatures.

    In Summary – Marine Reserves:

    • Provide a safe habitat for fish and other species to breed
    • Encourage ecosystems to return to natural state
    • Act as a buffer for fisheries


    • Marine Reserve
    • Habitat
    • Biodiversity
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