Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office
Pacific Southwest Region

Hiko White River springfish
( Crenichthys baileyi grandis )

 

Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Cyprinodontiformes
Family: Goodeidae
Genus: Crenichthys
Species: baileyi
Subspecies: grandis
Length: 1.6 inches
Habitat: require waters with stable environmental parameters; especially stable vegetative cover and freedom from nonnative fishes
 
   

Official Status:

  Endangered

Life History:

  Very little information is available on the life history and habitat requirements of the White River springfish and the Hiko White River springfish. However, research has been conducted on other Crenichthys subspecies. Because of the relatedness between the subspecies, it is assumed that the White River springfish and Hiko White River springfish have similar life histories and comparable habitat needs.

Distribution and Habitat:

 

Hiko Spring is used for agricultural and municipal purposes. The entire outflow stream is now captured in underground pipes and transported to nearby agricultural lands. The only surface water remaining is an impoundment at the spring source and a small marsh created by seepage from the spring pool. The spring maintains a temperature of 27ÂșC.

Crystal Spring has been modified for agricultural purposes since before European settlement. It consists of at least two individual springs; one flows from an orifice in limestone bedrock and the other from a contact between alluvium and bedrock

(Garside and Shilling 1979). The water level is controlled by a gate that directs flow into either outflow. Dense vegetation, consisting mostly of the nonnative aquatic weed watercress (Nasturtium officinale), lines the sand and silt bottom of the spring pools. The main outflow has a maximum depth of 1.5 meters (5 feet), width between 10 and 30 meters (33 and 100 feet), and extends approximately 900 meters (0.6 mile) before discharging into a concrete irrigation ditch (Tuttle et al. 1990). This reach is also characterized by dense aquatic vegetation and silty substrate. The southern ditch off of the spring pool is much shallower and narrower, has very little vegetation, and has a silty substrate.

The Blue Link Spring population refugia was established by the Nevada Division of Wildlife in 1984. The population descends from individuals taken from the repopulated Hiko Spring population.

Threats:

 

PAST THREATS:

The original population of Hiko White River springfish was extirpated from Hiko Spring and its outflow stream due to habitat modification for irrigation in 1963, and the later introduction of mosquitofish, shortfin mollies, and largemouth bass.

The Crystal Spring population has declined to dangerously low levels due to predation and competition with convict cichlids and shortfin mollies. The nonnative species invaded Crystal Spring from Ash Springs.

The Blue Link Spring population declined in 1990 when water flow into the reservoir decreased, and the water cooled to unfavorable temperatures. The population is now flourishing after the spring box water supply valves were repaired, and 150 fish from Hiko Spring were introduced to aid in repopulating the spring.

CURRENT THREATS:

The species continues to be threatened by habitat modification, and competition, predation, and parasitism from exotic species.

 

Actions / Current Information:

 

07/09/2007
  • Programmatic Safe harbor Agreement for Voluntary Enhancement/Restoration Activities Benefitting White River Springfish, Pahranagat Roundtail Chub and Southwestern Willow Flycatcher Within Pahranagat Valley, Lincoln County, Nevada
     
  • Attachment 2: Landowner Cooperative Agreement Template
     
  • Attachment 3: Landowner Certificate of Inclusion Template
    Last updated: April 16, 2014
    September 14, 2010