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Program Area

The Islands of the Pacific Biosphere Reserve is 2,869,441 acres of  21 islands and 91 islets and surrounding waters off the Pacific coast of the Baja California Peninsula. The reserve includes 173,317 acres of island surface and 2,696,124 acres of the ocean.

The islands and islets protected include the Coronados and Todos Santos, San Martin, San Jerónimo, Cedros,  Asunción, San Roque, Magdalena, Santa Margarita and Alijos among others.

The reserve is located in a region of extraordinary marine biological richness due to the particular oceanographic conditions that characterize the California Current System. The islands have 50 percent more endemic species of vertebrates and plants per unit area than the Galapagos Islands.

The barrier islands of Bahia Magdalena harbor iconic wildlife like the California Grey Whale during their birthing season and sea turtles that feed in the region’s vast mangrove forests. The Coronados, just several miles south of the US-Mexico border,  have Pacific Harbor Seal and Northern Elephant Seal colonies, four species of endemic reptiles and provide breeding grounds for 5,000 seabirds from twelve different species.

Each island in the reserve is unique.



Conservation Strategies

In 2005, our partner Grupo de Ecologia y Conservación de Islas developed a technical study which contains detailed information about the islands and the need to protect them. WILDCOAST’s joined the effort in 2010 to protect the islands of the Pacific. To help do so we:

  • Carried out an intense communication campaign that included news segments on television, radio, print and digital platforms.
  • Organized photo exhibits in Mexico’s Senate with images of the islands taken by renowned conservation photographers.
  • Carried out community outreach activities in Bahia Magdalena through workshops and talks to promote the conservation of the island’s natural resources.
  • Promoted the proposed conservation initiative by assisting in the updated version of the technical study in 2012.


In 2016, President Enrique Peña Nieto announced the creation of the new ​​2,869,441 acre Biosphere Reserve.

WILDCOAST is working with the National Commission for Natural Protected Areas (CONANP) to support the development of an effective management plan for the reserve that best protects its natural resources.  



Take Action

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Fay Crevoshay
Communications and Policy Director

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