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California Marine Protected Areas

Upper Newport Bay State Marine Conservation Area
Important: As of March 1, 2016 new MPA regulations are in effect.
Management Area: Southern California (Pt. Conception southward)

County: Orange

Nearest Port: Dana Point

Regulations in Effect Since: 1/1/2012

Boundaries: This area includes the waters below the mean high tide line within Upper Newport Bay northeastward of Pacific Coast Highway approximated by a line between the following two points:

33° 37.014' N. lat. 117° 54.237' W. long.;
33° 37.014' N. lat. 117° 54.336' W. long.; and southwestward of Jamboree Road approximated by a line between the following two points:
33° 39.071' N. lat. 117° 52.021' W. long.; and
33° 39.027' N. lat. 117° 52.014' W. long.

Recreational Fishing

Allowed Species: Finfish by hook-and-line from shore only.

Prohibited Species: All marine aquatic plants. All invertebrates. All finfish EXCEPT finfish taken by hook-and-line from shore.

Commercial Fishing

Allowed Species: None

Prohibited Species: All

Other Regulations: In waters below the mean high tide line inside the Upper Newport Bay Ecological Reserve, northeastward of a line connecting Shellmaker Island (33° 37.200' N. lat. 117° 53.510' W. long.) and North Star Beach (33° 37.380' N. lat. 117° 53.600' W. long.) the following restrictions apply:
  • Swimming is allowed only in the area between North Star Beach and mid-channel.
  • Boats are limited to speeds less than five miles per hour.
  • Shoreline access is limited to established trails, paths, or other designated areas.

It is unlawful to injure, damage, take, or possess any living, geological, or cultural marine resource for commercial and/or recreational purposes, except for those listed above.

Note that state and federal sport fishing regulations apply in addition to MPA regulations.