North Florida MPA

North Florida deepwater MPA


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Site Description

  • Coordinates: Northwest corner at 30°29’N, 80°14’W; the northeast corner at 30°29’N, 80°2’ W; the southwest corner at 30°19’N, 80°14’W; and the southeast corner at 30°19’N, 80°2’W
  • Location: 60 nautical miles off the mouth of the St. John’s River near Jacksonville, FL
  • Size: 10 X 10 nautical miles

The MPA consists of varying water depths ranging from 197 ft. to 656 ft. with a deeper area up to 1,247 ft. The bottom habitat comprises some mud bottom habitat and shelf-edge reef of slab pavement, blocked boulders, and buried blocked boulders. Snowy grouper and speckled hind have been caught in the area and the mud bottom may also be habitat for golden tilefish. Some mid-shelf species that that are also likely to inhabit the area include vermilion snapper, hogfish, scamp, red porgy, and tomtate. The location of this MPA represents a compromise between fishermen and the Habitat Advisory Panel in order to balance biological benefits with social and economic impacts.