Groundwater Pumping around Pahrump impacts Amargosa Canyon speckled dace

Amargosa Canyon speckled dace - photo: Dave [Gio] Giordano/University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources

The Center for Biological Diversity recently petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect three populations of speckled dace in the Death Valley region under the Endangered Species Act.

These small, minnow-like fish live in freshwater streams and springs in the desert and dry environments of Amargosa Canyon, Long Valley and Owens Valley, California.

Rapid residential development in Pahrump, Nevada and agricultural operations in the Amargosa Valley, Nevada have fueled groundwater pumping in excess of annual basin recharge rates. The Center for Biological Diversity contends that human water use reduces surface flow in the Amargosa River and degrades Amargosa Canyon speckled dace habitat.

On this edition of the Wild Hare, we chat with Patrick Donnelly, Nevada state director, Center for Biological Diversity about the recent petition and the dace as it exists in locations across the Great Basin.

See music credits below the map.

Use this interactive map to follow the tenuous course of the Amargosa River. The blue arrow marks the riverbed and Amargosa Canyon.

Music credits in order of appearance as reported through the Public Radio Exchange:

Song- Greenland
Artist- Emancipator
Album- Safe in Steep Cliffs
Label- Loci Records
Date- 2010
Duration- :42

Song- Lightness of Being
Artist- Paul Avgerinos
Album- Bliss
Label- Round Sky Music
Date- 2011
Duration- 2:09

Song- Signals
Artist- Seefeel
Album- quique
Label- Warp Records
Date- 2010
Duration- 2:11

Song- 92982.3
Artist- William Basinski
Album- 92982
Label- Temporary Residence Ltd.
Date- 2014
Duration- 2:31

Song- Soudani Manayou
Artist- Majid Bekkas
Album- Soudani Manayou
Label- Banana Hill
Date- 1973
Duration- 1:39

Song- Aurora
Artist- Jon Hassell
Album- Last Night the Moon Came Dropping Its Clothes in the Street
Label- ECM Records
Date- 2009
Duration- 3:10

Song- African Blues (feat Rachid Zeroual, Khalid Kouhen, Paolo Radoni, Marc Lelangue)
Artist- Majid Bekkas
Album- Soudani Manayou
Label- Banana Hill
Date- 1973
Duration- 1:37

Song- Youbadi (feat Rachid Zeroual, Khalid Kouhen, Paolo Radoni, Marc Lelangue)
Artist- Majid Bekkas
Album- Soudani Manayou
Label- Banana Hill
Date- 1973
Duration- 1:44