Explore in-place marine protections for 220 countries and territories.
What is it?
The most comprehensive database of marine life protections and their boundaries available. Navigator is a free, interactive map of regulatory information for marine protected areas (MPAs) and marine managed areas.
Navigator offers not just a guide to the location of MPAs but also includes the actual regulations for marine protection. Management measures are summarized for layperson use so that fishers and boaters on the water can be aware of rules and regulations where they are located. Additionally, Navigator codes over 20 fishing gears and human activities and states whether these are prohibited, restricted, allowed, or unknown, and lists focal species where identified.
The data can be analyzed to assist the international ocean conservation community on the state and coverage of marine protection, including:
Analysis of legal protections relative to species, habitats, and other factors to identify potential gaps and inform new protections
An indicator of progress towards 30 percent ocean protection by 2030
20,000+ MPAs and other managed areas
How Navigator assesses Level of Protection
What types of Fishing and
Activities Does Navigator
How is this data updated?
- Boundaries are approximate. Because GIS projection and topology functions can change or generalize coordinates, the spatial boundaries depicted are considered to be approximate representations and are not an official record for the exact regulated area boundaries.
- Not intended for enforcement purposes. Navigator is a guide and for informational purposes only, as site boundaries and restrictions may not be up-to-date.
- Regulations are summarized. The information on restricted activities is a distilled summary and does not represent the complete official regulations as cited in the legislative code. Users must refer to the official legislative code (link provided) for the complete official description of regulations and restrictions.
- Multiple restrictions may apply at once. Areas and their related restrictions are not listed in a hierarchical order based on level of restrictions. In areas where there are discrepancies among regulations across varying jurisdictions, it should be assumed that the most restrictive regulations apply.
- Only marine (saltwater/coastal) areas are included. Boundaries and regulations for Inland managed areas are not included in Navigator.
- Conservation Focus. Areas managed for extraction of natural living resources like fishing and take are the focus of Navigator. Military closures, vessel traffic areas and areas managed mainly for recreational and industrial uses may not be included unless they also manage extraction in some form.
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