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Increased Marine Protection

In June 2015, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA ) announced that it had expanded the boundaries of two Northern California marine sanctuaries—Cordell Bank and the Greater Farallones—to offer greater protection to these extraordinary ecosystems.

One of these, Cordell Bank, is among the seven featured areas in the Gallery of California Natural Sciences that depict the state’s diversity. As a result of the sanctuary‘s expansion, OMCA updated the exhibit to reflect the newly protected area, which has increased from 529 to 1,286 square miles. One of the most exciting results of the expansion is the inclusion of a deep seafloor feature called Bodega Canyon, a “hot spot” where migrating seabirds and whales come to feed.

The current Cordell Bank exhibit features a wraparound video installation of the sanctuary’s underwater habitats, computer graphics depicting migration patterns, and a re-creation of a deep-water reef.

Jennifer Stock, education and outreach coordinator of the Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary, partnered with OMCA on the development of the exhibit. “Working with the Museum has been an incredible opportunity for us to reach new audiences,” says Stock. “We value OMCA’s role in communicating the importance of protecting our marine resources.”

This story originally appeared in the Spring 2016 issue of Inside Out, the Oakland Museum of California’s Member magazine.