Shark Reef Marine Reserve

Community-based marine conservation in the South Pacific


Shark Reef is a small reef patch located on the finging reef off the coast of Viti Levu, Fiji. The western part of the reef is protected and known as Shark Reef Marine Reserve. This small-scale marine conservation project in the South Pacific is based on an agreement between the local villages who tradionally own the fishing rights on Shark Reef and Beqa Adventure Divers, a local dive opeartor. In exchange for the villages' agreement not to fish on the reef, the dive operator collects a so-called "shark-levy" from each visitor to be directly paid to the villages.

Shark Reef Marine Reserve is home to 460+ fish species, some of them possibly not yet scientifically described and others not previously known to occur in Fiji waters. The main attraction of Shark Reef Marine Reserve is its shark species, and particularly bull sharks. Up to eight different species of sharks can be encountered on a single dive. The site offers unique access to large predatory fish, and therefore provides many opportunities to research their ecology and behaviour.