Management of the sanctuary is accomplished through a combination of education, science, resource protection and regulatory programs.

Research & Monitoring provide the information needed to make decisions and assess changing conditions in the sanctuary. Education & Outreach provide a means to share what we've learned about the sanctuary and request input from the public during policy development. Resource Protection provides for the implementation of specific protective measures on behalf of the sanctuary based on all of the above.


Regulations identify prohibited or required activities related to anchoring, mooring, diver safety, fishing, discharges, marine mammals, sea turtles, rays, whale sharks, and sanctuary resources in all parts of the sanctuary.



The Management Plan serves as a framework for addressing issues facing Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctaury over a period of five to ten years. It lays the foundation for protecting, conserving, and enhancing the sanctuary.

Management Plan


In January 2021, NOAA issued a Final Rule for the expansion of Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary. This will result in the protection of additional critical habitat for important species in the Gulf of Mexico.

Sanctuary Expansion


The Sanctuary Advisory Council advises the sanctuary superintendent on priority issues affecting the sanctuary and provides an opportunity for information exchange with local communities.

Sanctuary Advisory Council