San Marcos Aquatic Resources Center
Southwest Region

About Us

Currently, the primary mission of the Center is to provide support for, and undertake research on, endangered, threatened, and species at risk.

Assessment of biological issues related to the Edwards Aquifer, San Marcos and Comal springs

Center activities include

  1. Collection, maintenance, and propagation of fishes, salamanders, Texas wild rice, and invertebrates as outlined in the FWS San Marcos/Comal/Edwards Aquifer Rare, Threatened, and Endangered Species Contingency Plan (Contingency Plan).
  2. Research life history, ecological requirements, genetics, and culture of Edwards Aquifer organisms
  3. Research on restoration of refugium species
  4. Collection of biological information on the region's aquatic biological resources
  5. Research related to invasive species in aquatic ecosystems, especially involving listed species
  6. Critical habitat restoration
  7. Research on life history and culture of listed aquatic west Texas species
  8. Troubleshooting problems at other hatcheries
  9. Training hatchery personnel


The Center is responsible for developing and maintaining refugia for several listed species as outlined in the Contingency Plan. The Center also is responsible for conducting research to enhance effectiveness of refugium activities and to help address issues related to habitats of the listed species. The Center conducts research on life history, ecological requirements, genetics, and culture of Edwards Aquifer organisms.

The Center is a refugium for Texas wild rice, Texas blind salamander, San Marcos salamander, fountain darter, Comal Springs riffle beetle, Devils River minnow, and the Barton Springs salamander.

Research for rare native mussels

The center is developing a research program for rare native mussels, species included in the research are the golden orb, Texas fatmucket, Texas pimpleback, and false spike.

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Last updated: December 31, 2015