Sharpnose Shiner and Smalleye Shiner Information, USFWS
Sharpnose and Smalleye Shiners
Photographs courtesy of Chad Thomas/Texas State University -
The sharpnose and smalleye
shiners are small minnows native to arid prairie streams of Texas.
Once found throughout the Brazos River and several of its major
tributaries within the watershed, the two species are currently
restricted almost entirely to the contiguous river segments of the
upper Brazos River basin in north-central Texas. This represents a
reduction from the sharpnose and smalleye shiners’ historical ranges
of more than 50 and 70 percent, respectively.
The maximum lifespan of these
species is approximately three years, although many shiners live
through only one breeding season. The sharpnose and smalleye shiners
both require wide, shallow, unobstructed flowing waters to survive,
grow and reproduce.
Based on evidence that the sharpnose shiner and the
smalleye shiner and their habitats are in decline, the U.S. Fish and
Wildlife Service (Service) identified these species as candidates
for listing under the Endangered Species Act in 2002. On August 6,
2013, the Service announced that it is proposing to list the two
shiner species as endangered species largely due to the continued
threat of existing and proposed water impoundments, drought
conditions, and invasive salt cedar in the upper Brazos River basin.
The Service also proposed to designate critical habitat in 11 Texas
counties. The Service has reviewed the comments received on the
listing and critical habitat proposals and anticipates making a
final decision during the summer of 2014.
General sharpnose shiner and smalleye shiner information: