“Delta Smelt: The Tiny Fish Caught In California’s War With Trump”

“Harbingers of a diminishing ecosystem, the smelt are almost extinct. Now, forces within the Trump administration could usher them into oblivion”

“On a warm November morning, John Durand squints over the stern of a small research boat, and gestures toward gray-blue water, and the chaotic tangles of tube-like tule reeds.

“Cache Slough right here had been known as a hotspot for delta smelt,” he says. But it’s been four years since Durand and his team of researchers from the University of California, Davis, have found the finger-length fish that gleam golden and “smell kind of like cucumber” in the brackish streams and sloughs of northern California’s bay delta.

Does he think we’ll see any today? Durand chuckles and combs his fingers through his white goatee.”

Maanvi Singh reports for the Guardian in San Francisco December 22, 2019.