Reclamation > News & Multimedia > news release > Reclamation lowers Lake Mohave water level to aid with annual razorback sucker harvest
Reclamation lowers Lake Mohave water level to aid with annual razorback sucker harvest

Media Contact: Doug Hendrix (702) 293-8391 dhendrix@usbr.gov
For Release: Oct 17, 2022
Endangered Razorback sucker Endangered Razorback sucker

BOULDER CITY, Nev. — The Bureau of Reclamation is lowering water levels in Lake Mohave to aid in harvesting razorback suckers (Xyrauchen texanus) from lakeside rearing ponds. The fish is an endangered species native to the Colorado River, and the drawdown is part of annual river operations which are timed to coincide with conservation activities for the fish. Lake Mohave will steadily lower from its current elevation of 637 feet above mean sea level (msl) to an elevation of about 633 feet msl by the week of Oct. 24 and will remain at approximately the same elevation for about one week. The lake level will begin to rise at the end of October and is estimated to reach an elevation of 639 feet msl by the end of November. Boaters should use caution when navigating the lake, as areas, especially downstream of Hoover Dam, will be shallower than normal.

Each year, Reclamation’s Lower Colorado River Multi-Species Conservation Program (LCR MSCP) gathers tens of thousands of newly hatched razorback sucker larvae from Lake Mohave and transfers the larvae to state and federal hatcheries throughout the Southwest. After an initial growth period in these hatcheries, many of the fish are placed in lakeside rearing ponds around Lake Mohave, where they continue to grow and learn how to forage for food. In the fall, these fish are harvested from the lakeside ponds, tagged with microchips, and released back into Lake Mohave.

The project is part of Reclamation’s continuing collaboration with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in cooperation with the National Park Service, Arizona Game and Fish Department, Nevada Department of Wildlife, and other interested parties. The LCR MSCP is a multi-agency effort to accommodate water and power needs while conserving species and their habitats along the river. More information about conservation efforts for razorback suckers is available at https://www.lcrmscp.gov/fish/razorback_sucker.html.

Lake Mohave is located above Davis Dam on the Colorado River near Laughlin, Nevada. Updated information on water levels at Lake Mohave and other Lower Colorado River reservoirs is located at https://www.usbr.gov/lc/riverops.html under Current Conditions. For current recreational information, visit the National Park Service website at https://www.nps.gov/lake/learn/news/lakeconditions.html.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov.

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