Jordan is racing against time to save a tiny rare fish from extinction as falling water levels partly triggered by global warming threaten to dry up its last habitat.
The Dead Sea toothcarp -- scientific name Aphanius dispar richardsoni -- has been on the red list of the International Union for Conversation of Nature since 2014.
The IUCN warns that the "exploitation of spring waters and climate change" are major threats facing the four-centimetre-long, silver-coloured fish.
Lying some 140 kilometres (85 miles) southwest of Amman in the Jordan Rift Valley and 60 kilometres south of the Dead Sea, the area is the lowest wet reserve on Earth.
"We have a plan to save and breed this fish... to create a natural habitat for it to breed and at the same time to mitigate the existing threat," added Mahasneh.
"The reserve is the last home for this endangered species of fish," said environmental researcher Abdallah Oshoush who works in the reserve.
The male fish also has a streak of blue along its sides, while the female has incomplete black stripes.
Among the environmental threats causing numbers to drop is the "lowering water level due to low rainfall and the change in its environment, as well as the presence of other fish that feed on it and its eggs."
The aim is then to release the young fish back into the natural environment.
Two decades ago the RSCN succeeded in saving the endangered Aphanuis Sirhani fish in its only habitat in the Azraq Wetland Reserve, about 110 kilometres (65 miles) east of Amman.
It got its scientific name from the Wadi Sirhan, which extends from the Arabian Peninsula to Azraq, but is commonly known in English as the Azraq killifish.
Only about six centimetres long, it is also silver but the female is spotted while the male has black stripes.
The RSCN studied the fish's life cycle and determined it needed shallow water to lay eggs, and should be isolated from other species for the best chance of survival.
"We collected 20 fish over two years and put them in a concrete pond designated for breeding."
After the first fish were released back into the waters the team saw its presence had increased from 0.02 percent to nearly 50 percent. It "was a great success," he added.
Twenty years on, the Azraq killifish accounts for almost 70 percent of the fish in the waters. But he cautioned the goal now is that the numbers should "never drop below 50 percent".
Hazem Hrisha, the director of the Azraq Wetland reserve, highlighted its important biodiversity, with more than 133 plant species and more than 163 species of invertebrates.
The reserve "is located on the most important bird migration paths," he said, adding two thirds of the bird species found in the kingdom had been recorded in Azraq.