To Unesco home page

To sitemap

To MAB home page title2.gif (2287 bytes)
      Biosphere Reserve Information



  General Description   Malindi-Watamu Biosphere Reserve is located on the coast of Kenya about 100 km north of Mombasa. Notable physical features of this biosphere reserve are rock platforms, cliffs and sandy beaches. Mida Creek comprises tidal mud flats with fringing mangrove swamps and the biosphere reserve area also includes coral reefs and sea-grass beds.
This region is one of the main recreational centers of Kenya and local communities benefit from tourism activities. Major attractions are boat trips, water sports, deep-sea fishing and coral viewing. Corals and shells have been exploited heavily by visitors and local tradesmen for souvenirs. Trampling and anchorage have also possibly caused disturbances on the reef. Furthermore, increasing siltation from the Sabaki River is a major threat to the reefs. Prawn trawlers as well as oil spills from tankers in deeper waters and pollution from industrial areas around Nairobi cause major habitat disturbance.
The Wildlife and Conservation Department manages the site. The area is one of the best-known reef areas of the Kenyan coast as a number of university expeditions have used it as a study site. Recent research activities include studies on coral, marine turtles and sedimentation and there is some ecological monitoring.
  Major ecosystem type   Tropical coastal/marine zone
  Major habitats & land cover types   Sub-littoral zone with microscopic marine plants; corals; intertidal sand and mud with marine angiosperms such as Cymodocea rotundata, Halodule wrightii, Thalassia hemprichii etc.; mangroves with Rhizophora mucronata, Bruguiera cylindrica and Ceriops sp.; intertidal rock zones with red algae such as Bostrychia spp. and Placophora binderi.
  Location   0314' to 0325'S; 3957' to 4011'E
  Area (hectares)    
  Total   19,600
  Core area(s)  
  Buffer zone(s)  
  Transition area(s) when given  
  Altitude (metres above sea level)   Sea level
  Year designated   1979
  Administrative authorities   Two Marine National Reserves and two Marine National Parks
  Brief description   Coral and marine turtle studies
Ecological monitoring
Siltation effects on reef ecology
  Specific variables...    
  Abiotic   Siltation/sedimentation.
  Biodiversity   Coral reefs, ecology, methodologies, reptiles.
  Socio-economic   n.a.
  Integrated monitoring   Impact and risk studies/Environmental impact.
  Contact address    
Malindi-Watamu Biosphere Reserve - Marine National Parks
PO Box 109
  Web site

Last updated: 11/05/2000

To topTo MAB home pageTo UNESCO