California Department of Fish and Wildlife - Pacific Beach

Restoration Project

California Department of Fish and Wildlife - Pacific Beach

Restoration Objective:

The purpose of this reef was to (1) provide shelter, forage, nesting and nursery areas for fishes and invertebrates; (2) offer rocky substrate for the attachment and growth of marine animals and plants, particularly giant kelp (Macrocystis sp.); and (3) provide study sites to investigate the effect of reef location, depth, relief, and rock size on the development of associated biotic communities.

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

1997 biological surveys of four Southern California artificial reefs: Oceanside# 2. and Mission Bay Park

J. Kashiwada
Carlsbad, Pacific Beach.

Site Observations:

Observation Date

6th Jun 1987 – 1st Feb 1997

Action Summary:

Pacific Beach Artificial Reef (PBAR) was constructed in 1987 with 10,000 tons of quarry rock. It consists of 12 module pairs arranged along three depth strata with varying height and boulder size.

Lessons Learned:

This artificial reef used 10,000 tonnes of quarry rock to create artificial reefs, however they did not effectively enhance macroalgae cover at most sites.

Project Outcomes:

Cystoseira was the most abundant macroalga on the PBAR shallow and mid-depth modules but was absent from the deep module.

Key Reasons For Decline:


Area of Restoration (Ha)


Indicator Data:


Ending Value:

Starting Value:

Adult Kelp Density

/ m2
/ m2