California Department of Fish and Wildlife - Abalone Cove

Restoration Project

California Department of Fish and Wildlife - Abalone Cove

Restoration Objective:

The objective of restoration was to Increasing Ecosystem Services.

Cause Of Decline:

Macrocystis pyrifera beds along the southern California coast were relatively stable prior to 1940. Declines were first reported in 1945 in areas nearest major sewage outfalls. This deterioration progressively affected beds at increasing distances from the outfalls, leaving small patches. Deterioration of kelp accelerated when an influx of warm oceanic water persisted off California from 1957-1959.

Key Reasons For Decline:


Scientific Paper

The Marine plant biomass of the Pacific Northwest coast (Chapter: Kelp Restoration in Southern California)

K.C. Wilson, P.L. Haaker, D.A. Hanan

Site Observations:

Observation Date

1st Jun 1974 – 1st Jan 1977

Action Summary:

At Abalone Cove, several thousand adult and juvenile Macrocystis plants were transplanted, mass cultures were dispersed, and gill netting was used to reduce large numbers of herbivorous fishes.

Lessons Learned:

This study transplanted juvenile and adult kelp plants from healthy kelp beds to new areas and focused on sea urchin control to ensure successful transplantation.

Project Outcomes:

A small bed of approximately 60 naturally attached adult Macrocystis plants was observed in the vicinity of the restoration site in February 1974. This small stand of kelp grew to 2.8ha by March 1975, to 9.06ha by January 1976, and 13.83ha by January 1977.

Key Reasons For Decline:


Area of Restoration (Ha)


Indicator Data:


Ending Value:

Starting Value: