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Amargosa pupfish at Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge


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#1 BenCantrell

BenCantrell
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  • San Diego, CA

Posted 28 November 2017 - 05:19 PM

I was in Las Vegas over Thanksgiving break and took a side trip to Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.  Unfortunately, the visitors center was closed, but it was still an awesome experience.  I took lots of photos, so I'll let them do most of the talking. :smile2:
 
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Apparently buzzsaw face sharks live here.
 
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And also scary grampa fish.  I didn't see any in the wild though.
 
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Boardwalk to Crystal Spring.
 
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Sign about the Pahrump poolfish and Ash Meadows Amargosa pupfish.  The poolfish has a pretty interesting story.  The entire species has been relocated several times.
 
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Spring-fed creek next to the boardwalk.
 
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Boo everything on the left, yay everything on the right.
 
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Crystal Spring. It had pupfish, but they were too far away to bother photographing.
 
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Clean water is a good thing!
 
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Cool sheetmetal artwork.
 
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#2 BenCantrell

BenCantrell
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  • San Diego, CA

Posted 28 November 2017 - 05:19 PM

Now I know how to say "Macho del pez cachorrito de Ash Meadows Amargosa" en Espanol. :)
 
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The behavior of these desert fish was once compared to puppies at play, but the pupfish aren't playing; they are highly territorial and will aggressively defend what is theirs.
 
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Map to King's Pool.
 
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Stream on the way to King's Pool. The pupfish here weren't very colorful.
 
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Living Fossils. We didn't see any Ash Meadows speckled dace.
 
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Pupfish bridge artwork.
 
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Pupfish carving.
 
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King's Pool.
 
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Ash Meadows Amargosa pupfish, male on the right, female on the left.
 
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Boy party.
 
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#3 BenCantrell

BenCantrell
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  • San Diego, CA

Posted 28 November 2017 - 05:24 PM

Male being territorial.
 
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So many pupfish!
 
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Hanging out in the shade.
 
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Picking at the rocks.
 
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One of the largest males.
 
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Some much smaller females.
 
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Little bulldog. Don't tell him he's a puppy.
 
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Pupfish sign on the walk back.
 
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View of Ash Meadows.
 
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Bonus: Devil's Hole pupfish plush at the Death Valley visitors center.
 
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I can't wait to go back.  Next time I'm going to make sure the visitors center is open.  I'd also like to see Devil's Hole, which is just 2 miles away, and the Salt Creek pupfish over in Death Valley.  I'm not sure the status of the poolfish, but those would be awesome to see too.
 
Hope you enjoyed the photos!


#4 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
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  • Ohio

Posted 28 November 2017 - 05:47 PM

This looks really fun Ben. GoPro on a stick? I assume that is allowed, but snorkeling is not?


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#5 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
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  • Ohio

Posted 28 November 2017 - 05:48 PM

Those are awesome photos.


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#6 BenCantrell

BenCantrell
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  • San Diego, CA

Posted 28 November 2017 - 05:51 PM

This looks really fun Ben. GoPro on a stick? I assume that is allowed, but snorkeling is not?


Signs at both of the pools said no swimming. I used my point & shoot at the water's edge.

#7 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
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Posted 28 November 2017 - 05:55 PM

How did you see what you were shooting? Remote viewer, or enough angle/depth to see the screen?


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#8 Isaac Szabo

Isaac Szabo
  • NANFA Member
  • The Ozarks

Posted 28 November 2017 - 07:36 PM

Awesome, Ben! Those pupfish photos are super cool. Looks like a really neat place to visit. Thanks for taking the time to share this. 



#9 BenCantrell

BenCantrell
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  • San Diego, CA

Posted 28 November 2017 - 07:54 PM

How did you see what you were shooting? Remote viewer, or enough angle/depth to see the screen?


Just blind clicking, but I tried to point the camera towards the big males. I took well over a hundred photos, and at least 90% of them are out of focus, haha.

#10 lilyea

lilyea
  • NANFA Member
  • Peace River Watershed, Central Florida, USA

Posted 28 November 2017 - 08:26 PM

Ben - thank you for sharing!  The fish, the environment, the fish art, and more - so much to really enjoy about your initial post!  Really good stuff!!!



#11 mattknepley

mattknepley
  • NANFA Member
  • Smack-dab between the Savannah and the Saluda.

Posted 29 November 2017 - 07:26 AM

Whaaaaat? I fish Ben can't catch! Inconceivable!

Just kidding, that is awesome stuff, Ben. Thanks for posting!
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#12 MtFallsTodd

MtFallsTodd
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  • Mountain Falls, Virginia

Posted 29 November 2017 - 07:45 AM

Cool pics Ben, thanks for sharing.
Deep in the hills of Great North Mountain

#13 Chasmodes

Chasmodes
  • NANFA Member
  • Central Maryland

Posted 29 November 2017 - 01:41 PM

Very cool stuff Ben!  What a beautiful fish and ecosystem.  Thanks for the report!


Kevin Wilson


#14 Matt DeLaVega

Matt DeLaVega
  • Board of Directors
  • Ohio

Posted 29 November 2017 - 07:49 PM

Whaaaaat? I fish Ben can't catch! Inconceivable!

Just kidding, that is awesome stuff, Ben. Thanks for posting!

No kidding. A fish Ben can't catch. Maybe he prefers to not get arrested( no guerilla angling) so settled on hundreds of blind photos. :biggrin:


The member formerly known as Skipjack


#15 BenCantrell

BenCantrell
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  • San Diego, CA

Posted 29 November 2017 - 08:16 PM

I'm in it for the long haul. Can't catch fish from jail, so I'm following the rules!

#16 mattknepley

mattknepley
  • NANFA Member
  • Smack-dab between the Savannah and the Saluda.

Posted 30 November 2017 - 07:18 AM

I don't know; he looks pretty squeaky-clean but I bet he goes rogue... eyeroll, laugh, otheremojijunkmycomputerwon'tletmedo
Matt Knepley
"No thanks, a third of a gopher would merely arouse my appetite..."

#17 itsme

itsme
  • NANFA Member

Posted 02 December 2017 - 10:27 PM

Ash Meadows is Awesome!  Highly recommend!  Thanks for the photos!  Had a great visit there once.



#18 Casper

Casper
  • NANFA Fellow
  • Chattanooga, TN alongside South Chickamauga Creek, just upstream of the mighty Tennessee River.

Posted 03 December 2017 - 03:07 PM

We had an entire issue of American Currents dedicated to the outstanding NANFA convention held there seven years back.  Peter Unmack was our host as he provided logistics and direction from years of experience working there.  Though the lodging and activities were held at Ash Meadows, where yes we were able to snorkel, our talks were held at Death Valley, and yes there are fish in the desert.

This AC issue was the first that went digital with Peter's urging and is in full color.  Perhaps Wolfe can provide a link to it on this thread.

I consider it the most adventurous convention yet.  I believe we spent a week with talks, activities and a well attended extended wander along the eastern flank of the state.  Valley of Fire!  Hot Creek.  Area 51,  Pararump!  Moapa.  Devil's Hole.  Fireballs.  and finally Jubilee.

 

I wrote a blog about the adventure...

 

http://casperswander...gspot.com/2010/


Edited by Casper, 03 December 2017 - 03:17 PM.

Casper Cox
Chattanooga, near the TN Divide on BlueFishRidge overlooking South Chickamauga Creek.

#19 Chasmodes

Chasmodes
  • NANFA Member
  • Central Maryland

Posted 06 December 2017 - 02:04 PM

Cool blog article Casper.  It was a nice lunchtime read for today.  What an incredible trip and a cool place to visit.  It's on my trip wish list now after reading Ben's report and your blog post.

 

I'll check out your other posts in future lunch breaks.  I haven't written in my blog since August (feeling guilty).  I have plenty of subject material, I just need time to compose.  Are you planning to post again?


Kevin Wilson




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