The Moapa Valley National Wildlife Refuge was established on September 10, 1979, to secure habitat for the endangered Moapa dace, a small fish commonly found throughout the headwaters of the Muddy River system. Dace populations were in decline due to habitat destruction and modification. Competition with introduced species such as mosquitofish and shortfin molly, as well as the appearance of non-native tilapia, contributed to the dace's decline. However, as more and more habitat is restored and non-native species are removed, the fish has begun to rebound. Recent population surveys show a healthy increase in numbers.
The refuge is located on 116 acres in northeastern Clark County and is approximately 60 miles north of Las Vegas, Nevada. Dace habitat on the refuge consists of stream channels supported by six thermal springs emerging near the center of the refuge.
Due to its small size, fragile habitats, and on-going restoration work, the wildlife refuge is only open Friday, Saturday and Sunday, sunrise to sunset, from Labor Day through Memorial Day. The wildlife refuge is closed from Memorial Day until Labor Day.
The refuge is now open for the season every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from sunrise to sunset
From Las Vegas, drive north on Interstate 15 to the Moapa/Glendale exit (#90). Go straight (northwest) on Highway 168 for 7.4 miles to Warm Springs Road. Turn left (southwest) on Warm Springs Road and drive for 1.4 more miles. The refuge is on your left, when you see the chain link fence on both sides of the road.
From St. George, Utah or Mesquite, Nevada, drive south on Interstate 15 to the Glendale/Moapa exit (#91). Turn left (southwest) onto E. Glendale Blvd. Merge/turn right (northwest) onto Highway 168 for 7.4 miles to Warm Springs Road. Turn left (southwest) on Warm Springs Road and drive for 1.4 more miles. The refuge is on your left.
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