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North Mojave Desert - Nevada
Amargosa Desert - Sand Dunes:

Big Dune ACEC, Nevada

Big Dune ACEC is located in the Amargosa Valley of Nye County off Valley View Road south of State Highway 95. It is a 1.5 square mile complex star sand dune that reaches 2,731 feet above sea level. It is managed to protect habitat for four sensitive beetle species, three which are endemic to this single dune complex and are found nowhere else in the world. Big Dune is one of only three dune systems in the planning area. Giulianiís big dune scarab beetle (Pseudocotalpa giulianii) was proposed for listing as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act in August 1978 with the entire Big Dune Complex proposed critical habitat for the species. Off-road vehicle use and mining were identified as the largest threat to the species at the time. Three other sensitive beetle species can also be found at Big Dune:
    Large Aegialian Scarab Beetle (Aegialia magnifica)
    Rulienís miloderes weevil (Miloderes rulieni)
    Big Dune aphodius scarab beetle (Aphodius sp.)
Vegetation around and on the dunes includes creosote bush (Larrea tridentata), sandpaper plant (Petalonyx thurberi), prickly poppy (Argemone corybosa) and astragalus (Astragalus lentiginosus var. variabilis). These plants and the dune itself are very important for survival of these rare beetle species. All four Big Dune beetle species rely on dune plants for survival. The plants provide food and mating sites and, when covered with sand, shelter and food for their larvae. The beetles also burrow into the harder layers of sand below the loose, windblown dune surface when they are inactive.

Recreation Opportunities:
    Non-competitive off-highway vehicle use
    Limited to existing roads and the open dunes
    Sandboarding and sandskiing on open dunes
    Wildlife viewing
    Photography


Source - BLM Nevada


Big Dune

recreation - ecology: wildlife - plants - geography: places - MAPS - map/sat - roads & trails: route 66 - old west - communities - weather
ghost towns - gold mines - parks & public lands: wilderness - native culture - history - geology: natural features - 360 photos - glossary - comments

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