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Balmorhea state park


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#1 Guest_Gavinswildlife_*

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Posted 23 March 2014 - 10:43 PM

One day at the breakfast table there was an idea... An idea to spend spring break in parched west texas. My family flew into el paso, and spent a day at Carlsbad caverns, NM. Balmorhea state park is midway between Carlsbad and big bend, so we are staying the night. I'm very excited to see all of the rare fish species in the spring. Pupfish, pecos gambusia, and headwater catfish are very easy to spot. In the morning I will try to take and post pictures.

#2 Guest_Casper_*

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 08:09 AM

I read about this years ago in National Geographic.
I hope you take good pictures and tell the tale well.
You are fortunate to experience it.

#3 Isaac Szabo

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 08:40 AM

Cool. Let us know how it is. I have been wanting to go there for a while.

#4 mattknepley

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Posted 24 March 2014 - 04:28 PM

Add me to the "wants to hear" and "is jealous" crews...

Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#5 Guest_Gavinswildlife_*

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 03:31 PM

pretty much sums it up. :)

#6 Isaac Szabo

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 04:21 PM

Looks like you a had a good time. Thanks for sharing the video. I could pick out the tetras, catfish, and softshell, but it was hard to tell what some of the smaller stuff was in the video. I assume some were gambusia and pupfish. Do Pecos gambusia look much different than normal gambusia (affinis)? Are the pupfish in the part of the spring where you can swim pure Comanche Springs pupfish? Seems like I remember reading that another species was hybridizing with them. What other species did you see? Any F. zebrinus?

#7 Guest_Gavinswildlife_*

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 04:32 PM

The male (I think) Pecos Gambusia are straight out yellow. After a morning looking in every nook and cranny of the stream and pool, along with ranger info, the olny fish species in San Solomon Springs are G. nobilus, C. elegans, Ictalurus lupus, and A. mexicanus. The pool has catfish, huge schools of mexican tetras, and the pupfish. I remember reading that the tetras get in the way when filming,
and boy is it true! The only really good pupfish shot I got is shown in the last part.

Edited by Gavinswildlife, 25 March 2014 - 04:33 PM.


#8 Guest_Gavinswildlife_*

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 04:57 PM

Today we tracked down the Big Bend Gambusia, In Big Bend National park. The pond isn't exactly advertised (most rangers are unaware), and only accessible hidden off an unmapped utility road with "Do Not Enter" signs.

An old sign states:
Fish So Fragile
This pond contains the world's population of Gambusia Gaigae. These minnow-sized fish have lived here since mastodons.
Unique and fragile, they survive today only because man wants to make it so.

Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

Edited by Gavinswildlife, 25 March 2014 - 04:58 PM.


#9 Guest_Casper_*

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 05:55 PM

The Good, The Bad and The Fishy.
:)
Reminds me of our NANFA Nevada waters trip a bit.
Glad you are having fun.

#10 Guest_Gavinswildlife_*

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 06:29 PM

Thanks, everybody! Does anyone know where Leon springs pupfish live?? If i'm in west Texas, may as well see 'em all.

#11 Isaac Szabo

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 06:57 PM

Diamond Y Spring: http://www.nature.or...ng-preserve.xml

It doesn't look like there's public access, though.

#12 Guest_Gavinswildlife_*

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 08:26 PM

Thanks, looks like we're not going (no access). It's hard to believe how few and far between fish are out here, and water for that matter. The place we are staying at says to only use 5 gallons a day. It really is amazing, I would definitely recommend it to all y'all who want to come out.

#13 mattknepley

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Posted 26 March 2014 - 05:33 AM

Thanks for posting! Glad you are able to experience such a neat ecosystem, and am happy you shared it with us.
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#14 Guest_mmyers1976_*

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Posted 26 April 2014 - 08:56 AM

I went myself last summer. Here is my thread on my visit.:
http://forum.nanfa.o...801#entry108801

Edited by mmyers1976, 26 April 2014 - 08:58 AM.




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