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Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
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Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)

General Description: Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea) grow to 4.5-inches long and can be identified by the black dot at the base of the tail. Also, the Moapa dace has small embedded scales which give it a leathery appearance.

Taxonomy: Minnow and Carp Family (Cyprinidae)

Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)

Technical Description: A small (total length: 8 cm [3 in.]) fish with a short head, a terminal mouth, and thick, semi-conical lips. The dorsal fin starts above or slightly behind the insertion (i.e., the front edge) of the pelvic fins, and the caudal fin is forked. The dorsal color is dark, the sides are brownish with light golden areas, and the ventral color is light. There is a dark spot on the tail and a dark line on each side of the body. The scales are small and deeply embedded, and the skin has a leathery appearance. While some species of dace have a small maxillary barbel, this species does not.

Diet: Omnivorous. Feeds on invertebrates, detritus, and algae in the water column and on the bottom.

Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)

Favored Habitat: Spring pools, outflows, and the main stem of the Muddy River where the water is clear and warm (28 to 32 degrees C [82 to 90 degrees F]). Habitat use varies with age: juveniles tend to occur in spring pools and outflows where water velocities are slower and temperatures are warmer, while adults tend to occur in outflows and in the Muddy River where water velocities are faster and temperatures are slightly cooler.

Where to Find: Endemic to Clark County. This species occurs only in the warm springs and six miles of stream and spring outflows along the upper Muddy River. Cool water temperatures limit the downstream distribution of this species.

Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)

Comments: Breeds all year (but mostly during the Spring) in shallow, sandy-bottom areas of spring outflows where water temperatures are 30-32 degrees C (86 to 90 degrees F).

Special Remarks: Federally endangered.

Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
This photo © 2010 David J. Syzdek
Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
This photo © 2010 David J. Syzdek
Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea) Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea) Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea) Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea) Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea) Moapa Dace (Moapa coriacea)
Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 111219

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