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A Talk on the Wild Side.

Native Texans: Rio Grande Silvery Minnows from Texas Stocked in Big Bend National Park

Rio Grande silvery minnow release
The Service's William Knight, Rueben Mendoza, Colby Crouse, Stewart Jacks, Cirilo Alonzo and Rene Guerra form the traditional "bucket line" to facilitate stocking Rio Grande silvery minnow at Big Bend National Park.

Texans love their state, and being a native, or “real,” Texan is a true badge of honor in the Lone Star State. We are hoping that it also helps Rio Grande silvery minnow, an endangered fish whose population in Texas is considered experimental and non-essential.

Since 2008, Rio Grande silvery minnows have been released back into the minnow’s historic range at Big Bend National Park, Texas, every year. The species had not been present in this stretch of the Rio Grande River since the 1960s. Those fish were from the Southwestern Native Aquatic Resource and Recovery Center in New Mexico.

Rio Grande silvery minnow

Last week brought a key change: 132,500 Rio Grande silvery minnows from Uvalde National Fish Hatchery in Uvalde, Texas, were stocked in the park. It marked the first time that Rio Grande silvery minnows stocked in Texas were raised in Texas. 

We and key partners, Texas Parks & Wildlife Department, National Park Service and a number of private landowners and ranchers, will continue stocking the Rio Grande silvery minnow. Let’s hope these native Texans thrive.

-  Matt Trott, External Affrairs

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