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: August 28, 2020

Boulder City, Nev. — The Bureau of Reclamation will begin lowering water levels in Lake Mohave on September 1 to aid in harvesting razorback suckers (Xyrauchen texanus) from lakeside rearing ponds. The fish is an endangered species native to the Colorado River.

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 643.8 feet above mean sea level to an elevation of about 634 feet msl by the week of October 4 and will remain at approximately the same elevation for approximately one week. The lake level will begin to rise in mid-October and is estimated to reach an elevation of 636 feet msl by the end of October. 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 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.htm.

# # #

The Bureau of Reclamation is a federal agency under the U.S. Department of the Interior and is the nation's largest wholesale water supplier and second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Our facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation opportunities, and environmental benefits. Visit our website at https://www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR; Facebook @bureau.of.reclamation; LinkedIn @Bureau of Reclamation; Instagram @bureau_of_reclamation; and YouTube @reclamation.

Relevant Link:

https://www.lcrmscp.gov/fish/razorback_sucker.html

https://www.usbr.gov/lc/riverops.html