Edwards Aquifer Authority takes action following reports of growing parasite problem in San Marcos and Comal rivers

Through a partnership with the city of New Braunfels, the Edwards Aquifer Authority  will examine concentrations of the parasite in the Comal River system. n

Through a partnership with the city of New Braunfels, the Edwards Aquifer Authority will examine concentrations of the parasite in the Comal River system. n

The Edwards Aquifer Authority is responding to reports of a growing parasite problem with a plan to survey the situation in the Comal River.

Community Impact Newspaper in July published a report about how a parasite named Haplorchis pumilio is threatening fish, such as the endangered fountain darter, in the San Marcos and Comal rivers.

Carried by an invasive Asian snail, the larvae of the parasite penetrate the skin of the fish, causing trauma and inflammation that affects their ability to swim.

Now, through a partnership with the city of New Braunfels, the aquifer authority will examine concentrations of the parasite in the Comal River system.

Michael De La Garza, the senior director of communications and development for the EAA, said no such study has yet been planned for the San Marcos River system.

“Additionally, we have instructed our partners at U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to provide us with the costs to examine wild caught fountain darters for Haplorchis as part of annual routine fish health screening,” De La Garza wrote in an email.

Population surveys have been conducted of the endangered fish in both rivers for 20 years as part of the Edwards Aquifer Habitat Conservation Plan, but the aquifer authority had not specifically monitored the presence of Haplorchis.

De La Garza said the conservation plan includes methods in place to collect data on fountain darter populations in the San Marcos and Comal rivers.

“Our biological monitoring has shown no drop off in fountain darter populations,” he added.

Researchers at Texas State University, including parasitologist David Huffman and graduate student Allison Scott, had expressed concerns about the long term effects of Haplorchis on local fish populations.

“I think the prudent thing to do is to establish a monitoring program to keep track of this and develop some experiments with snail removal or something so that when a drought comes, we'll be ready for it, instead of walking out there one day and seeing that almost all the fish are dead,” Huffman said in May.


Render of rebuilt Marktplatz at Wurstfest
Wurstfest debuts New Braunfels Marktplatz renderings

Wurstfest's lease was also renewed at City Council meeting.

Postal Annex opening soon in Freiheit Village

A new Postal Annex will be coming to Freiheit Village in late March. The business, which will be located at …

PT Solutions opens near Resolute Health Hospital

Physical therapy clinic offers free consults

Salimat with her host family, interpreter, mother and the owners of Krause’s after her surgery. (Courtesy HeartGift)
Krause's Cafe fundraiser collects $25,000 for heart surgery

The money raised helped provide heart surgery for a young girl from Uganda.

High school receives AV upgrades

The upgrades are expected to be completed in Spring 2020.

The Smithson Valley High School freshman cheer team won first place at the NCA Senior & Junior High School National Championship on Feb. 1-2 in Dallas. (Courtesy Comal ISD)
Comal ISD freshman cheer team named NCA national champions

The team placed first in the NCA Senior and Junior High School National Championship.

Creations Catering is expected to open in early 2020. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Creations Catering now open

The grand opening is Feb. 28

Tia's Taco Hut Now Open

Located at 2180 Hwy. 46

Polls open for early primary voting

Early voting locations are open for the 2020 primary election.

Residents will be able to drop off their household hazardous waste at a city event on Feb. 22. (Courtesy Fotolia)
City of New Braunfels to host hazardous waste drop-off

Hazardous materials will be accepted from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. Feb. 22.

Vulcan plans to mine 40% of its 1,500-acre property at the intersection of Hwy. 46 and FM 3009 over the next 80 years. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Lawsuit filed against TCEQ for Vulcan quarry permit

Groups opposing a proposed quarry owned by Vulcan Materials filed a lawsuit Feb. 14 against the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

Back to top