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Interagency Cooperation Completes the El Coronado Ranch Habitat Conservation Plan Monitoring
Southwest Region, October 15, 2008
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San Bernardino NWR Staff in Cooperation with Arizona Fisheries Resource Office and Arizona Game and Fish Department Complete Monitoring of Endangered Fish on El Coronado Ranch.  On October 13, 14, and 15 Refuge staff along with Jason Kline from the Arizona Game and Fish Department, Jeremy Voeltz and Marty Underwood from the Arizona Fisheries Resource Office conducted HCP monitoring work on the El Coronado Ranch in Cochise County in Southeastern Arizona.  El Coronado Ranch, located in the west foothills of the Chiricahua Mountains, had an HCP intiated in 1998 for the purpose of recovery of Rio Yaqui fish. 

The monitoring is to gather information on the recovery efforts for endangered fish of the Rio Yaqui drainage; Yaqui chub (Gila purpurea), longfin dace (Agosia chrysogaster), Yaqui catfish (Ictalerus pricei), and Mexican stonerollers (Campostoma ornatum).  The monitoring is conducted using several methods; electro-fishing, trammel nets and hoop nets, and minnow traps. The El Coronado Ranch has several ponds that are fed by run off from the mountains and West Turkey Creek, which is an ephemeral stream.  Like last year, all the ponds on the Ranch held water through the summer.  Currently all ponds on the Ranch are full, most to over capacity, and West Turkey Creek is flowing.  This year fish were found in every pond compared to last year when only three of the ponds surveyed held fish.  During the stream survey portion of the monitoring approximately 30 Mexican stonerollers were collected and moved up stream in Turkey Creek and reproduction of Mexican stonerollers was evident.  Since June of 2007 approximately 250 Mexican stonerollers have been relocated from Rucker Creek in the Chiricahua Mountains to El Coronado Ranch.  Only two Yaqui Catfish were caught this year, the same as last year, but the two were recaptures so valuable data can be gathered from them.  In addition to the sites surveyed on the El Coronado Ranch, three sites were also surveyed on the Coronado National Forest.  Of these three sites, only two Mexican stonerollers were found, but this is notable due to the fact that no Mexican stonerollers were encountered in the survey.

Contact Info: Christopher Lohrengel, 520-364-2104 x.106, chris_lohrengel@fws.gov



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