Hunt For Vandals Who May Have Killed Rare Fish

GMT 11:20 2016 Wednesday ,11 May

Arab Today, arab today Hunt For Vandals Who May Have Killed Rare Fish

Devils Hole is a cavern pool fed by a hot spring
London - Arab Today

Three men who went on a drunken binge in a protected area of Death Valley National Park, possibly killing one of the rarest fishes on Earth, have been identified by authorities.

The National Park Service (NPS) said the men were identified following tip offs by the public and an investigation by several agencies.

Surveillance video showed the trio climbing a fence guarding Devils Hole in Nevada on 30 April.

They fired at least 10 rounds from a shotgun, shooting the locks from two gates,and hitting a motion sensor and several signs. They also left beer cans and vomit at the scene.
One of the men can be seen jumping into Devils Hole, a cavern pool fed by a hot spring which is the only natural home to the critically endangered Devils Hole pupfish.

The suspects have not been named because the case remains active.
There are only around 115 of the iridescent blue fish living in Devils Hole, which is more than 500ft deep in parts but less than two feet deep where the fish feed.

On Monday, one of the pupfish was found dead, according to the NPS. It is being examined to determine if the men's actions killed it.

Ileene Anderson, a senior scientist with the Center for Biological Diversity, said: "Devils Hole pupfish have been teetering on the brink of extinction for years.
"The last thing they need are these idiots running amok in the last place on Earth where they still survive."

The pupfish were at the centre of a 1976 ruling by the US Supreme Court which banned groundwater pumping for agricultural use near the site because of its impact on Devils Hole.

Rewards totalling $15,000 have been offered for information leading to the men's arrest and conviction.

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