The Southern Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office is located in Las Vegas, Nevada, within the Mojave Desert.

About Us

The Southern Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office is located in Las Vegas, Nevada within the Mojave Desert. The Southern Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office was established in 1995 primarily to work on recovery and regulatory issues related to the Mojave Desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii), a species listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), and to help with efforts to conserve native desert fishes in southern Nevada. 

The map below depicts the office's coverage area:

Nevada's native fishes are unique in all of the the world. The state is home to more endangered endemic fishes than anywhere else in the U.S. The isolated aquatic systems across this driest of the 50 states have allowed for genetic changes that can generate new forms.

At least 12 fish species are endemic to Nevada waters. For example, the Devils Hole pupfish resides in a single spring on National Park Service land located within the Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. Also, the Moapa dace is another species of fish found only in Nevada.

Here is a map depicting locations of desert fishes found within the office's coverage area.

What We Do

The Southern Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office works with federal, state, and local partners to recover 28 federally listed species and three candidate species designated under the ESA. We also are responsible for administrating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act, and we work with others to protect migratory birds in southern Nevada. Our staff includes biologists and technical personnel with expertise in desert ecology, spring and riparian riparian
Definition of riparian habitat or riparian areas.

Learn more about riparian
systems, high elevation ecosystems, information technology, administration, and geographic information system (GIS).

Our Organization

Ecological Services

Ecological Services staff use the best available science and sound managerial techniques to further the Service's mission to conserve, protect, and enhance fish and wildlife and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. In doing this, staff integrate their Federal authorities with social, political, and economic realities to ensure sound resource decisions while recognizing the importance of a partnership approach addressing the needs of stakeholders, since the vast majority of fish and wildlife habitat is in private ownership. In addition, education and information dissemination are integral parts of all of our activities

Listing and Critical Habitat

Through the Listing Program, the Service determines whether to add a species to the federal list of endangered and threatened wildlife and plants. Listing affords a species the full range of protections available under the ESA, including prohibitions on killing, harming or otherwise "taking" a species.


Section 7 Section 7
Section 7 Consultation The Endangered Species Act (ESA) directs all Federal agencies to work to conserve endangered and threatened species and to use their authorities to further the purposes of the Act. Section 7 of the Act, called "Interagency Cooperation," is the mechanism by which Federal agencies ensure the actions they take, including those they fund or authorize, do not jeopardize the existence of any listed species.

Learn more about Section 7
of the Endangered Species Act directs all federal agencies to use their existing authorities to conserve threatened and endangered species and, in consultation with the Service, to ensure that their actions do not jeopardize listed species or destroy or adversely modify critical habitat. Section 7 applies to management of Federal lands as well as other federal actions that may affect listed species, such as the issuance of a federal permit or the federal funding of a project.

By contacting the Service early in the planning process, federal agencies such as the U.S Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the Bureau of Reclamation can learn what actions will satisfy Section 7 requirements, what actions can be taken to minimize adverse effects to listed species and therefore avoid delays or misunderstandings on their project.

Survey protocol information and training resources for Mojave Desert Tortoises are available in this Library.

Migratory Bird Permit Program

The mission of the Migratory Bird Permit Program is to promote long-term conservation of migratory birds and their habitats and encourage joint stewardship with others.

As authorized by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issues permits to qualified applicants for activities such as falconry, raptor propagation, scientific collecting, special purposes (rehabilitation, educational, migratory game bird propagation, and salvage), take of depredating birds, taxidermy, and waterfowl sale and disposal.

Find more information here:

Mojave Desert Tortoise facing out of burrow
The Desert Tortoise Recovery Program works to provide effective and coordinated recovery, research, and monitoring activities for the Mojave Desert Tortoise; provide a sound and defensible scientific basis for decision-making; assess the benefits of recovery actions; provide information and...
A large bird with brown feathers, white head, and yellow beak flies against a pale blue sky
The Migratory Bird Program works with partners to protect, restore and conserve bird populations and their habitats for the benefit of future generations by: ensuring long-term ecological sustainability of all migratory bird populations, increasing socioeconomic benefits derived from birds,...
A rocky shoreline of a river. The water is calm. Mist and green branches line the river.
The Ecological Services Program works to restore and protect healthy populations of fish, wildlife, and plants and the environments upon which they depend. Using the best available science, we work with federal, state, Tribal, local, and non-profit stakeholders, as well as private land owners, to...
Close up of a California condor. Its pink featherless head contrasts with its black feathers.
We provide national leadership in the recovery and conservation of our nation's imperiled plant and animal species, working with experts in the scientific community to identify species on the verge of extinction and to build the road to recovery to bring them back. We work with a range of public...
A duck flies over a tundra pond.
We use the best scientific information available to determine whether to add a species to (list) or remove from (delist) the federal lists of endangered and threatened wildlife and plants. We also determine whether already listed species should be reclassified from threatened to endangered (uplist...
Condor soars over mountain ridge.
We work with partners to conserve the ecosystems upon which endangered species and threatened species depend, developing and maintaining conservation programs for these species to improve their status to the point that Endangered Species Act protection is no longer necessary for survival. This...
Partners for Fish and Wildlife: Nevada Coordinator Susan Abele Meets with Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe Member to Conduct a Site Visit at Pyramid Lake Indian Reservation
The Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program provides free technical and financial assistance to landowners, managers, tribes, corporations, schools and nonprofits interested in improving wildlife habitat on their land. Since 1987, we have helped more than 30,000 landowners to complete more than 50,...

Our Species

The Southern Nevada Fish & Wildlife Office works with federal, state, and local partners to recover 28 federally listed species and three candidate species designated under the ESA. Listed species include amphibians, birds, fish, invertebrates, plants and reptiles.

Small silver-colored fish in water

White River spinedace are endemic to the White River system in Nye and White Pine Counties, Nevada.  The White River spinedace is a member of the cyprinid tribe Plagopterini known only from the lower Colorado River Basin.  The Plagopterini tribe of cyprinid fishes includes the...

FWS Focus
Small fish in water

The Virgin River chub is a silvery, medium-sized minnow that averages about 20 centimeters (cm) or 8 inches in total length, but can grow to a length of 45 cm (18 inches). The Virgin River chub can be distinguished from G. robusta by the number of rays (9 to 10) in the dorsal, anal, and pelvic...

FWS Focus
Ute ladies'-tresses plant with white flowers in a grassy environment

Ute ladies'-tresses is a perennial herb with erect, glandular-pubescent stems 12-60 cm tall arising from tuberous-thickened roots. Basal leaves are narrowly linear, up to 1 cm wide and 28 cm long, and persist at the time of flowering. Leaves become progressively smaller up the stem and are...

FWS Focus
Desert Tortoise walking in the desert

The Mojave desert tortoise is a large, herbivorous (plant-eating) reptile that occurs in the Mojave Desert north and west of the Colorado River in southwestern Utah, southern Nevada, southeastern California, and northwestern Arizona in the United States. The desert tortoise is one of most...

FWS Focus

Our Library

Two small blue fish in water

Recent count of Devils Hole pupfish shows increased population.

SNAP Team Out in Force at Aviation Nation-FINAL 12-09-22.pdf

Representatives of the Southern Nevada Agency Partnership (SNAP) met the public at Nellis Air Force Base on November 4-6, 2022, during the annual Aviation Nation spectacle on the base.

Two black-footed ferrets poke their heads out of black pipes lying in tall grass to examine the photographer
Here you can find resources from across the Fish and Wildlife Service about threatened or endangered species.
Mount Charleston blue butterfly Recovery Plan

Recovery of the Mount Charleston blue butterfly will occur when threats are sufficiently reduced or conditions improve to permit the population to increase based on the criteria listed in the recovery plan. Threats to the butterfly include the loss and degradation of habitat due to fire, fire...

Mount Charleston blue butterfly Recovery Implementation Strategy

The recovery actions identified in the recovery plan and the specific activities in the implementation strategy are those that, based on the best available science, the Service believes are necessary to bring about the recovery of the Mount Charleston blue butterfly and ensure its long-term...

Mount Charleston blue butterfly Species Report

An assessment of the biology, life history, and status of the Mount Charleston blue butterfly is available in the Species Biological Report.

Location and Contact Information