Category: Creatures

Name this former aquarium dweller

Found in the LA River by TU’s Karen Barnett and Bob Blankenship while pulling out trash, this popular aquarium fish is also known by an alternative name, which comes from its ability to detect changes in barometric pressure and react with frantic swimming or standing on end. (Courtesy Karen Barnett)

Yes, fish are actually jumping out of the water

John L says:
October 3, 2015 at 6:06 pm Edit
Yup! Seen that today too! Big carp and Lil bass chasing each other, as if they were spawning again!

Sabrina Burgess-Drill says:

October 3, 2015 at 5:57 pm Edit

It was like that several years ago. Maybe 2005 or 6?

“Catch me, before I disappear in the El Nino river waves.” (Jim Burns)

Alien vs. Plecostomus

Here's lookin' at you, kid. (Grove Pashley)
Here’s lookin’ at you, kid. (Grove Pashley)

Grove Pashley, of L.A. River Kayak Safari, spotted this odd-looking river denizen near Victory Boulevard and wondered what in the heck it was.

“Plecostomus,” replied biologist Sabrina Drill by email, “we’ve spotted them in that area before.”

Aquarium lovers might know this heavily armored bottom feeder as a “janitor fish,” one that comes from the Amazon to clean the algae off your tank. In this case, looks like when he got too big (the species grows to 2 feet), plunk, the river became his new home.

Remember besides sending in pics here for an ID, you can also use the INaturalist app.

See you on the river, Jim Burns

At long last … L.A. River tilapia

Yes, Ernest, the tilapia also rises. (Jim Burns)
Yes, Ernest, the tilapia also rises. (Jim Burns)

Who knows if it’s true, that the city planted tilapia in the river in the 1970s to combat mosquitoes. Whatever, great story. All I know is that I’ve been waiting for what seems like forever for a LARFF commenter to send in pics of the critters — basically the same ones that grace Trader Joe’s frozen foods section.

Well, today, after Will and I watched three red-tail hawks, who in turned watched us from the high sycamores. And after they awed us with their fishing ability, in which they literally descend and pluck their prey from the moving water, without missing a wing beat, Will hooked up. Result: tilapia.

See you on the river, Jim Burns

We love you, Howard Wong

Howard Wong saved this and three other carp from a sidewalk demise during our recent storms. (LAStormwater)
Howard Wong saved this and three other carp from a sidewalk demise during our recent storms. (LAStormwater)

Here’s a typical beauty shot, seen in fly-fishing mags in shops across America. But, this isn’t catch and release. It’s a true lifesaver as L.A. environmental Compliance Inspector Howard Wong rescues this sweet carp and three others from their waterless perch atop the bank, where they were washed up during our recent powerful storms.

Without Howard, we would be four fish short in the river. Thank you!

Hope to see you on the river, Howard. — Jim Burns

Bishop Chamber asks for your input in proposed FWS critical habitat designation

The endangered Mountain Yellow-Legged Frog. (Creative Commons)
The endangered Mountain Yellow-Legged Frog. (Creative Commons)

Bishop Area Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau

Dear Chamber Members and Friends –

You may have heard by now that the US Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to designate critical habitat for the yellow-legged frog, the Yosemite toad and the northern population segment of the mountain yellow-legged frog in California.

Inyo County areas proposed for the critical habitat designation would include Rock Creek Lake, Mt. Tom, the Bishop Creek Drainage (including South Lake), Coyote Flat, Big Pine Creek Drainage and Onion Valley.

Outdoor recreation such as fishing, camping, hiking and trail riding could certainly be affected by any such designation. Many businesses and the overall economy of the Eastern Sierra might be impacted.

We understand that the issues of species protection and critical habitat are complex, and the Bishop Area Chamber has not officially taken any position on the matter. We would however like to encourage all members, friends and concerned people to weigh-in on the matter. We truly believe that the only way to create the best public policy is to participate in the discussion!

Please follow the links below to learn more about the two proposed designations (one for critical habitat and the other as an endangered/threatened species).

Please take time to do this ASAP, as the deadline for public comment is Monday.

Click Here To Visit Inyo County Planning Department Webpage. You’ll see maps and related documents.

Click Here To Give Your Comment on the Proposed Critical Habitat Designation

Click Here To Give Your Comment on the Proposed Endangered/Threatened Species Designation

Bishop Area Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau | 690 North Main Street | Bishop | CA | 93514