Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office
Pacific Southwest Region

Desert Fish Recovery

Snorkel surveys at Moapa Valley NWR and Moapa dace and Moapa White River springfish
The Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office works with many communities and agencies to ensure Nevada's fishes have a future. We work with our partners to repair damaged rivers and streams; provide guidance and funding to farmers and ranchers to develop more efficient water delivery systems; and we work with land owners and managers to develop land use plans that reduce adverse impacts to native species and their habitats. Desert Fish Recovery efforts are coordinated in Southern Nevada by multi-agency Recovery Implementation Teams that comprise many of our partners and land management agencies
Many of the issues or threats that face Nevada’s imperiled fishes include the introduction of nonnative fishes that compete with the native fish for food and cover, habitat destruction that changes important habitats required for spawning and feeding, and decreases in water flow.
In order to have enough fish to re-populate areas we restore, we construct refugia and remove nonnative fish that may feed on native fish. Specific examples include:
  • Constructed a refugia for the endangered Pahrump poolfish with our partners the Nevada Department of Fish & Wildlife, Desert National Wildlife Refuge, and Bureau of Reclamation. This refugia was built with the public in mind and includes viewing areas for the poolfish.
  • At Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge we are working with our partners to develop and implement a restoration plan that will restore modified habitat to a naturally functioning system for the benefit of three endangered fish and a true bug that is listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.
  • We have begun restoration of important springs and their outflows at Moapa National Wildlife Refuge and have plans to continue the restoration. The restoration will include an in-stream viewing chamber that will provide the public an opportunity to see the endangered Moapa dace in its habitat.
Last updated: November 6, 2014