Unsupported Browser Detected

Internet Explorer lacks support for the features of this website. For the best experience, please use a modern browser such as Chrome, Firefox, or Edge.

Recreational Fishing Communities Help to Protect and Restore Habitat through National Fish Habitat Partnership

June 03, 2024

Nearly $175,000 will support habitat restoration and angler engagement projects in Oregon, Hawaiʻi, and South Carolina.

A group of 10 volunteers and staff in matching shirts pose for a photo on a beach Kuleana Coral Restoration team gathers at a public outreach event in 2023 at Pokai Bay, Hawai'i. Credit: Kuleana Coral Restoration

This year, NOAA Fisheries is funding three projects to restore habitat through the coastal National Fish Habitat Partnerships. These projects will actively engage local communities-- including anglers—who make critical contributions to fish habitat conservation nationwide. The projects demonstrate our commitment to restoring fish habitat and supporting access to sustainable saltwater recreational fishing, a popular pastime that boosts the U.S. economy.

Recreational Anglers Collect Data to Help Protect Groundfish Habitat in Oregon

Sponsoring Partnership: Pacific Marine & Estuarine Partnership

Oregon’s Department of Fish and Wildlife will partner with recreational anglers from underserved communities to collect long-term data in unique nearshore Oregon coastal habitat. The data collected will be part of monitoring projects that help inform how to best manage coastal waters into the future. During hook-and-line surveys, anglers will measure the size and count the abundance of fish caught in Oregon’s Cascade Head Marine Reserve. The reserve is part of a system of five marine reserves in the waters along the state’s coast. They were designated to help conserve marine habitats and biodiversity. They also serve as living laboratories to learn about Oregon’s nearshore ocean environment and the effects that protections have on these areas over time.

Two people looking out to a view of the ocean and coastline from aboard a boat
A sea view of the Cascade Head Marine Reserve. Credit: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife—Oregon Marine Reserves

Continuing Community-Based Coral Restoration in West O‘ahu, Hawaiʻi

Sponsoring Partnership: Hawaiʻi Fish Habitat Partnership

Kuleana Coral Restoration will expand upon last year’s pilot community-based coral restoration project at Pokai Bay in West O‘ahu, Hawaiʻi. This year they will plant coral at additional sites outside the bay. This will help to cultivate connective fish habitat around the bay, an important subsistence and recreational fishing area for the local community. To measure the success of coral restoration efforts in increasing fish biodiversity, Kuleana Coral Restoration will conduct fish surveys in partnership with Hawaiʻi Monitoring and Reporting Collaborative. Finally, local anglers and youth residents will prepare large finger coral fragments for outplanting through two annual community engagement events with Na Kama Kai

Engaging Students From Underrepresented Communities in South Carolina Coastal Restoration

Sponsoring Partnership: Southeast Aquatic Resources Partnership

Expanding on their pilot projectSouth Carolina Department of Natural Resources will develop a curriculum to teach students and coastal communities about the ecological importance of coastal habitat restoration to recreational fisheries through hands-on activities. Students from low-income families and alternative learning programs will directly improve fish habitat in the salt marsh by planting smooth cordgrass provided by From Seeds to Shoreline. They will deploy oyster habitat made from recycled crab traps collected by Ocean Aid 360’s Marine Habitat Restoration Program. Students will also have the opportunity to fish and crab during the events.

An adult and a child crabbing together off the side of a pier, with others in the background on a sunny day.
A student lowers a crab pot over the side of a pier. Credit: South Carolina Department of Natural Resources