Nevada Nature May 02, 2018
The World’s Rarest Fish Can Be Found Right Here In Nevada And You’ll Want To Find It
You don’t have to convince Nevadans of all the ways that Nevada is special. The list is truly endless when it comes to how unique, weird, beautiful, and amazing our state is. However, one of the most notable items on this list would be the fact that Nevada is home to the
world’s rarest fish. That’s right. Not only is this particular fish considered the rarest on the planet, but it was also the first species to ever be listed as endangered. Oh, and you can see it for yourself by visiting Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. How amazing is that? This is truly an “only-in-Nevada” experience that you’ll definitely want to take advantage of.
The rarest fish in the entire world can be found right here at the incredible Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. The 23,000-acre refuge is absolutely stunning, and can be found in southwestern Nevada's Amargosa Valley.
This definitely doesn't look like the type of place that contains the world's rarest fish. It
is the middle of the desert, after all. Can fish even survive in the desert? In fact, this rare fish species has been surviving here for over 10,000 years!
As you stroll along the refuge's boardwalks, the phrase "desert oasis" may come to mind. It's not long before you come across all sorts of little pools of water. They feel slightly out of place in the desert, but they are utterly beautiful.
In fact, these turquoise-blue pools are actually fed by what is referred to as "fossil water" from underground aquifers. That's how these pools are able to maintain their water levels despite existing in one of the most arid ecosystems in Nevada.
It's believed that the water that flows into these pools comes from runoff of the surrounding mountains that occurred a whopping 15,000 years ago. Hence, the name fossil water. It's bizarre to look at these pools and realize that they are part of a journey that occurred over thousands of years.
But what about this incredibly rare fish we keep hearing about? It's called the Devils Hole Pupfish. There are only approximately 100 left in the world and they all live right here in the refuge.
You'll find the pupfish in a place called Devils Hole. The name certainly adds a sense of mystery and creepiness to this place, but it's definitely well-earned. This habitat is unlike any other in the world. It might as well be straight out of a science fiction movie.
Devils Hole quite literally looks like a narrow crack in the side of the mountain. This cavern is thought to be up to 60,000 years old and contains one of the most unique water habitats to ever exist.
Inside the cavern is what looks to be a small pool of water. However, this thing is actually so deep that scientists still don't know the exact depth of it because nobody's ever seen the bottom. There's even a theory that the bottom of the pool connects to other parts of the world as far away as Oaxaca, Mexico.
The pool sits at a constant temperature of 92 degrees and is surrounded by limestone walls. The pupfish have evolved over thousands of years to exist in this specific environment only. For all the hullabaloo, you'll be surprised by how small this fish actually is. They are just a mere 3/4 of an inch in length.
Seeing this miraculous fish with your own eyes is a must for every Nevadan. It's pretty amazing to think the Silver State is the only place you can find this unique species, along with one of the most mysterious and bizarre water habitats in the world. For more information, you can visit the National Parks site
Have you seen the world’s rarest fish yet? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below! Nevada is always surprising us. Just take a look at these
9 Incredible, Unbelievable Facts About Nevada.