Wildlife talk will focus on fish

KINGMAN - The Arizona Game and Fish Department's Summer Wildlife Series has remained on solid ground ... until now.

Fisheries biologist Gregg Cummins will move the series from land to water with a presentation "Native Fish of Arizona" from 6:30-7:30 p.m., Friday at the Kingman Mohave County Library, 3269 Burbank.

Cummins will discuss different species of native fish, provide biological information, discuss which of the fish can be caught, and the importance of reintroductions and protections. For those that qualify as sport fish, he'll provide tips on where they can be caught and the best types of bait to use.

"Out of sight, out of mind," said Zen Mocarski, public information officer for the Game and Fish Region 3 office in Kingman, in regards to public perception of fish. "Most of the public knows little about the native fish of Arizona.

"This presentation will provide people of all ages an opportunity to come and learn about these species of fish that have learned over years how to survive in the harsh Arizona environment."

This presentation marks the fourth in a series of talks Game and Fish conducts the second and fourth Friday of each month through August. While open and free to the public, seating capacity is limited to 52 and is handled on a first-come, first-served basis.

A number of obstacles have made life difficult for native fish.

"Humans have altered the ecosystem, which can benefit some species of sport fish, but have made life difficult for fish native to Arizona's rivers, streams, and creeks," Mocarski said. "Arizona Game and Fish and other agencies have worked to help restore these populations."

Some of the fish to be discussed will include: roundtail chub, various species of suckers and dace and the relationship between many fish species.

Following native fish, the presentations will be, in order: Bugs (July 22), Cranes (Aug. 12), and Elk (Aug. 26).

"Attendance has been fantastic this year," Mocarski said. "We've only turned away people once, but we've been at or near capacity for the first three presentations. My best advice is to show up early, but my hands are tied in regards to room capacity."

For more information, contact Mocarski at (928) 692-7700, Ext. 2301.

Visit the department website at www.azgfd.gov for more information.