• Spring-time view of the seashore, with shorebirds returning to the surf.

    Cape Hatteras

    National Seashore North Carolina

Two North Carolina National Seashores Being Considered for Marine Protected Area Status by Noaa

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Date: January 13, 2010
Contact: Cyndy Holda, 252-473-2111 Ext. 148

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Marine Protected Areas Center, in cooperation with the Department of the Interior (DOI) has created a first ever inventory of the nation’s marine protected areas. This unique, comprehensive inventory catalogs and classifies marine protected areas within US waters. Thirty-two sites, including twenty-one units of the National Park System and several national wildlife refuges, have been nominated to join the national system of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). Cape Hatteras and Cape Lookout National Seashores are among the national seashores listed in the Federal Register last week.


Developed in response to Executive Order 13158 on Marine Protected Areas, the final framework for the national system was published on November 19, 2008. Comments on the nominations to the national system are due February 22, 2010. For more information, check NOAA website at: www.mpa.gov or submit comments to: e-mail us .

Did You Know?

Lightning whelks are one of the few species of

Lightning whelks eat about one large clam per month. The whelk pries the clam open with its muscular foot, wedges the clam open with its shell, then eats the soft inside of the clam. Lightning whelk shells, which whorl to the left, wash up on the beach at Cape Hatteras National Seashore.