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Desert Springs Action Committee, Martinez, California
Ash Meadows Work Party - OCT. 8-10, 1999
The Desert Springs Action Committee, in conjunction with the Bay Area
Killifish Association, Northern Californian Killifish Club, North American
Native Fishes Association, and others is happy to presents their latest
conservation field trip to the Nevada desert.
During October 8-10 we will be undertaking conservation work at the Ash
Meadows Wildlife Refuge, Nevada, under supervision of US Fish and Wildlife
Ash Meadows, Nevada is a very special place. It has a higher number of
endemic species for its given area than any other place in the United
States. This is primarily due to the presence of permanent freshwater
springs that allow life to flourish in the desert. Ash Meadows was also the
site of one of the longest environmental battles in North America,
(1967-1984). For a considerable time the area was threatened by ranchers
who diverted spring outflows and pumped excessive quantities of ground water
for irrigation, threatening the continued existence of the springs. The
next principal impact was a proposed desert city that would have also
required large quantities of ground water. As a combined result of these
impacts one fish species is extinct, and the remainder are currently listed
as Endangered species by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Today the area
is a National Wildlife Refuge and despite it's current protective status,
problems still regularly occur, i.e. exotic fish species are still
introduced into springs threatening native aquatic fauna.
Our primary objective is the removal of non-native organisms including
damnbusia, mollies, largemouth bass, crayfish and bullfrogs. We will likely
also conduct some cattail removal from some springs so bring gloves. There
will be ample opportunity to see the native pupfishes and dace close up.
Please note however, no native fish may be removed from the refuge as all
are fully protected by the Endangered Species Act.
We will be camping at the refuge headquarters, however, alternative
accommodation is also available at the nearby Longstreet Casino 1 800 508
9493. Ash Meadows is located a few miles north of the CA-NV border on Hwy.
373 and is clearly marked with signpost. A map is available on the web at
http://www.tkphotos.com/ashmed/amapa.htm. We will gather at the refuge
office at 8 am on the 8th to organize activities.
DSAC will be coordinating the meal preparation with help from various old
hands. Bring personal eating utensils and special dietary needs, i.e. sweet
n low, canned tuna, Doritos chips. Our stay out there will be similar to a
pot luck sharing both in clean up (K/P duty) and items like chips, snacks,
and fresh fruit (bring extra to share). The Desert Springs Action
Committee, however, will provide the main stay of our foods. A $24 stipend
towards the food is requested in advance and covers a two-day menu with a
special BAR-B-QUE Friday night. Participants who wish to come for the
Bar-B-Que only will be charged $12.00, in advance.
Please inform us early if you wish to form, or need car pool information. A
very comprehensive WEB page of the work we do and past trips is located at
Contact Peter Unmack <peter.unmack at asu.edu>, 480 965 1578 or Jim Lawson, 802
Arlington Way, Martinez CA 94553, <jelawson at ix.netcom.com>, 925 335 9346 for
further information, maps, and required registrations forms (cancelled
check). The non-refundable stipend is due September 15, 1999. Please make
checks payable to Jim Lawson at the above address.
Thank you all for you time in this matter and I look forward to another
great Ash Meadows weekend.
Steele Graphics and WEB Design
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