To determine if the strategy of spawning in saucer-like depressions is obligate or facultative for longfin dace (Agosia chrysogaster), we collected adults from four sites in the upper Gila River (southwestern New Mexico), stocked them in separate outdoor stream-mesocosms lined with cobble substrate, and made daily observations for the presence of saucer-nests and hatched larvae. Larvae were observed from three of the four mesocosms and emerged at temperatures ranging from 19.2–24.0°C. The absence of saucer-nests in all mesocosms throughout the study indicates that longfin dace can spawn over cobble substrate and have larvae hatch successfully, suggesting that longfin dace can use an alternate spawning strategy when sand substrate is not available for construction of saucer-nests.
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Vol. 59 • No. 2