The 46th Annual meeting of the DESERT FISHES COUNCIL (DFC) will be held 19 to 23 NOVEMBER 2014 (Wednesday to Sunday). The meeting will be hosted at the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro in San José del Cabo, Baja California Sur, México by Dr. Francisco J. García de León, Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste, S.C. (CIBNOR), in collaboration with Drs. Gorgonio Ruiz-Campos and Faustino Camarena-Rosales of the Universidad Autónoma de Baja California.

San José del Cabo, founded in 1730, is a small city of approximately 70,000 people and is home to the historic Misión Estero de las Palmas de San José del Cabo Añuití. It has beautiful white sand beaches and supports a vibrant local culture. In addition to having a beautiful beachfront location, the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro is located 0.6 miles from the Estero San José, a wonderful coastal oasis for birding and walking, and 1.5 miles from the city’s central plaza and historic mission church. The average daily maximum air temperature in November is a lovely 86F (30C) for San José del Cabo.

Onsite meeting registration will begin on Wednesday afternoon 19 November and an informal mixer will be held that evening at the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro.  Oral and poster technical sessions will be Thursday through Saturday (20-22nd), with the DFC Business Meeting on Friday afternoon and banquet at the hotel on Friday evening.  All events will be in the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro.

Para información en español: http://www.cibnor.gob.mx/eventos/desertfishes2014.html


We have reserved a block of 80 rooms at the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro. This beautiful beachfront hotel is all-inclusive (food and drinks, including alcoholic beverages). Amenities include five restaurants, three bars, four swimming pools, a gym, a spa, a children’s activities room, and, of course, white sand beaches. Rates for DFC annual meeting attendees will be about $110 (1450 pesos) per person per night double occupancy, or about $165 (2175 pesos) per person per night single occupancy. Charges for additional room guests (e.g. a third guest in a double occupancy room) will be about $89 (1160 pesos) per person per day. For accompanying minors under 6 years old there is no additional charge; however for children between the ages of 6 and 12 there is an additional charge of about $44 (580 pesos) per child per day. We strongly encourage all attendees to reserve rooms at the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro as it will be difficult for attendees staying elsewhere to gain access to the hotel grounds without being a registered guest. Refreshments and all meals during the meeting (e.g. coffee, snacks, breakfast, lunch and dinners) will also not be available to attendees that are not registered guests at the hotel. Reservations can be made by phone Monday thru Friday from 8:30 AM to 6:30 pm and on Saturday from 8:30 am until 1:30 pm. Reservations can also be made via  grandfaroloscabos@barcelo.com, or

Here are detailed instructions for making reservations via the internet:

  1. Follow this link to get the English version of the hotel’s website, or copy and paste the URL into your browser: http://www.barcelo.com/BarceloHotels/en_US/proceso_reserva/seleccion_habitacion.aspx?hid=363&did=126
  2. Enter Cabo under “Hotel or Destination”. Select “Barcelo Gran Faro los Cabos” – this is important!
  3. Enter dates (e.g. Nov 19-24) and # of people per room.
  4. Click in the Discount box where it says “see discounts”. You will get a box to the right where you enter “desertusa” (no quotes). Click the “Confirm Discount” (confirmar descuentos) box below it.
  5. Then go back to the main box on left and click on “Search for Room”. A new window with your room type selections should come up. There are two types, with the cheaper one that we negotiated being the lower of the two boxes: “Special Offer + free airport shuttle”. There are also options to upgrade to ocean view rooms etc.
  6. Enter contact and payment information.



Attendees arriving by air should book flights to the Los Cabos International Airport (airport code: SJD). Numerous airlines fly into Los Cabos, including Alaska, American, Frontier, Southwest, and US Airways. Most flights can be booked through a standard search engine such as Travelocity (www.travelocity.com) or Sky Scanner (www.skyscanner.net/aboutskyscanner.aspx), but Southwest Airlines tickets are only available through their website (www.southwest.com). Attendees are encouraged to monitor ticket prices, as they do fluctuate depending on the search time and day. On average, flights from cities in the western United States to the Los Cabos airport range in price from $300-$500.

Los Cabos International Airport is located nine miles north of the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro. Rental cars are available from several agencies (e.g. Alamo, Budget, Fox) at the airport. Taxis and private shuttle services are always available to transport attendees to the hotel, and we may also arrange shuttle buses or vans to transport attendees from the airport to the hotel. We will update the DFC membership about these fine-scale transportation details as we get closer to the meeting.

For federal/state government employees going to the meeting on official travel, the foreign contact information to use in your travel requests is:

Dr. Francisco J. García de Leon
Laboratorio de Genética para la Conservación
Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste
Instituto Politécnico Nacional 195, Playa Palo de Santa Rita Sur
La Paz, B.C.S. México; C.P. 23096
Tel. direct from US – 011 (52) (612) 123-8405; Fax: 011 (52) (612) 125-3625


Register, pay dues, and purchase DFC products online at the DFC Online store. Early registration costs will be $225 for regular members, $90 for student members, $60 for Latin American members and $40 for Latin American students. For Latin American members who wish to pay their registration fees using their banks rather than a credit card via the DFC Online Store, CIBNOR has included their banking and money transfer information on their website.

Meeting registration rates increase 50% after the September 30th pre-registration deadline. Cancellations will be accepted until 31 October, but a $5.00 USD fee will be charged. Email your online store receipt to Phil Pister for a credit to your credit card if you have to cancel.


The annual DFC Banquet, daily refreshment breaks, and all social activities (e.g. music, cultural dancers) planned for the meeting are included in the hotel room registration. Non-guests will have difficulty accessing meeting rooms and will not be able to attend the banquet so we ask that all attendees reserve a room at the Hotel Barceló Gran Faro. Any accompanying guests (e.g. spouses, children of meeting attendees) who are staying at the hotel are invited to the banquet.


As in the past, presentation abstracts are submitted via an online web form – See below.

Whether oral or poster, presentations must fall within the scope of the DFC’s mission. No abstract will be accepted or scheduled unless submitted in compliance with the instructions to authors.

The deadline for abstract submission is September 30, and no new abstracts will be accepted after this date. As always, DFC membership and meeting pre-registration paid by the abstract deadline are pre-requisites for abstract acceptance.

Oral presentations are allotted 15 minutes (including questions and responses). Each presenter is limited to a single oral presentation, but poster presentations are not limited and are encouraged. Program space is limited and order of receipt will determine acceptance and programming of presentations. Click here to submit an abstract.


These are special oral reports coordinated by ecoregion. Agency offices and other organizations desiring to contribute information to these reports should contact their corresponding Area Coordinator. Area coordinators will also be contacting individuals in their areas to solicit input to their reports. More information or help with this process can be obtained from the Areas Coordinator, who coordinates the work of all of the Area Coordinators.


Awards are presented annually for the best presentations given by students. Students competing for these awards must so indicate in the submission of their abstract.


DFC routinely helps defer expenses incurred to travel to present papers or posters, with preference given to students and citizens of Latin American countries. Special instructions detailed in the travel grants page must be followed to request travel support. Travel grant request forms must be received one month prior to the deadline for abstracts.


Resolutions must be submitted via the same form as for abstracts and by the same deadline. Additional information and a specific format are required, however, as detailed in the 2004 meeting minutes (see page 73 of the 2004 Proceedings).


As there are few freshwater habitats with native fish located near San José del Cabo, the local hosting committee has suggested a number of organized tours that attendees may be interested in joining. These tours include snorkeling, diving, mountain biking, swimming with dolphins and whale sharks, and desert excursions. A preliminary list of these excursions can be found on the CIBNOR website  and we will provide updates on field trip options in the coming months.


To keep updated on additional details regarding this year’s annual meeting, please watch the DFC web pages and subscribe to DFC-L to be assured of receiving updates regarding that process.

DFC 2014 poster