Moapa dace

North America


Moapa coriacea


  • Habitat degradation and loss
  • Predation by non-native fish species

The Moapa Dace, the lone fish species from the Moapa genus, can only be found in the warm springs of southern Nevada, USA. Its scientific name, Moapa Coriacea, is derived from the Latin word that means ‘leathery’. Its deeply embedded scales give off that hard-textured skin. This cyprinid fish needs water temperature ranging between 87 and 93 °F in order to function normally.

The spring systems which serve as its native habitat range have all been subjected to many disturbances, alterations, and pollution since the second half of the 21st century. As the surrounding water areas are converted for municipal and industrial use and to make way for irrigation and recreational activities, the rapid population decline is inevitable.

Population growth and recovery is proved to be difficult for the Moapa Dace with the introduction of predatory fish species such as the Shortfin Molly, Channel Catfish, Black Bullhead, Fathead Minnow, and the Common Carp which also brings with them parasites.