The seas around the Cape Peninsula are rich in marine biodiversity because it is where the cold Benguela and warm Atlantic currents mix. In 2004 the Table Mountain National Park Marine Protected Area (MPA) was pronounced to help ensure that commercial and recreational use of the ocean is sustainable.
The MPA includes 1000km2 of the sea and coastline around the Cape Peninsula from Moullie Point in the North to Muizenberg in the south. While fishing is allowed in the majority of the MPA - subject to the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries’ (DAFF) permits, regulations and seasons, it also includes six restricted areas, or "no take" zones, within the MPA where no fishing or extractive activities are allowed. In the sixth restricted area around the Karbonkelberg in Hout Bay, only snoek are allowed to be caught deeper than the 35m contour.
These restricted or “no-take” zones are important breeding and nursery areas for marine life and through leaving these undisturbed there will ultimately be an increase in marine stock and threatened species are given a chance to regenerate.