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Giant Asian Carp will give you the smackdown

Discussion in 'TRIBE Main Forum' started by alexd, Oct 5, 2010.

  1. alexd

    alexd Administrator Staff Member


    A dreaded aquatic bully has Canadian and U.S. scientists banding together to thwart what's been called the greatest threat to the Great Lakes — the Asian carp.

    Fisheries Minister Gail Shea announced $415,000 in funding Tuesday in Toronto for an 18-month, bi-national program that will assess the risks the carp pose. The study will also aim to figure out how to shut down pathways the fish — currently being held at bay near Chicago — could use to enter the Great Lakes.

    "The results will provide essential information for decision makers regarding monitoring, rapid response and management," Shea said at the announcement.

    Canadian Fisheries and Oceans research adviser Becky Cudmore recently took a trip to get a look at the invasive fish species, best known for leaping nearly two metres out of the water near passing boats.

    "Hundreds of fish were just leaping out of the water," Cudmore said.

    The large fish, some longer than a metre and weighing up to 50 kilograms, are a serious threat to boaters, who have reported injuries ranging from serious bruises to broken jaws.

    "When you are in a moving boat, and they are leaping, and it hits you … you feel it," said Cudmore.

    In the U.S., the carp are wreaking havoc on the ecosystem by decreasing biodiversity and decimating fisheries.

    Introduced to North America in the 1970s to stop the spread of algae, the silver and bighead species of Asian carp escaped from southern U.S. fish farms in the 1990s during flooding.

    They have infested parts of the Mississippi and Illinois rivers, wiping out other fish populations.

    "They are ferocious feeders," said Robert Lambe, chairman of the Great Lakes Fishing Commission.

    "They tend to wipe out the lower food chain, so other fish tend not to survive."

    Adam Godfrey, who runs a sport fishing charter business from the Canadian side of Lake Erie, said Asian carp could easily "destroy" his business and the entire area's fishing industry, worth an estimated $7 billion a year.

    "It's really a complete disaster in terms of the charter fishing industry," Godfrey said.
    Scientists, states sound alarms against carp

    Officials on both sides of the border have been sounding the alarm for several years about the carp, but Canadian worries spiked when one was found downstream from an electrified barrier near Chicago in June — just kilometres from the Great Lakes.

    Scientists said they will continue to research possible points of entry for the Asian carp.

    "The Great Lakes is our home," said research scientist Nick Mandrak. "We need to know not only where our doors are but where our windows are."

    The research will also examine the food supply in the waters to see if the carp would survive if they entered the Great Lakes, and it will chart the time in which the invasion could occur.

    The researchers also hope to find what rivers the carp could spawn in and try to predict population size.

    Two electrical barriers are currently in place near Chicago-area waterways to prevent two-way movement of invasive fish species between the two basins, the Mississippi River and the Great Lakes.

    Several U.S. states are involved in a lawsuit in an effort to close locks to stop the fish.

    Michigan's assistant attorney general has said the threat is so imminent that the waterways leading into Lake Michigan have become a "carp highway."

    But on Tuesday, Shea said Canada would not get involved in the legal fight in the U.S.

    "This legal battle could have tied us up as a country and stopped us from moving forward on his issue," she said.

    With files from The Canadian Press

    Read more: CBC News - Technology & Science - Asian carp threat to Great Lakes to be assessed
  2. Bumbaclat

    Bumbaclat TRIBE Member

    Are they edible?
  3. acheron

    acheron TRIBE Member

  4. alexd

    alexd Administrator Staff Member

  5. I_bRAD

    I_bRAD TRIBE Member

    At the very least they've gotta be better livestock feed than used motor oil and sawdust
  6. saskboy

    saskboy TRIBE Member

    I've seen huge carp down here (harbourfront).

    Are they Asian carp?

    and lots of zebra mussels (another invasive species)
  7. alexd

    alexd Administrator Staff Member


    I wonder who would win
  8. Maui

    Maui TRIBE Member

    Just relax in a boat, make your mood happy. And get fish free, when you don't need a rod to go fishing. And still wife is missing > no she isn't missing, she's in the kitchen
  9. recoil

    recoil TRIBE Member

    I think so. I just googled the ones we have here in Hamilton and it said they are Asian. Cootes Paradise had a problem with them for as long as I can remember. Cootes is this huge wetland at the tip of the harbour - in behind McMaster University, basically. the carp got in there through a canal and they just tear up the plant roots and muddy the water.. basically fuck up the ecosystem for everything else. the things are seriously *huge*. we'd always see them thrashing around in the shallows tearing shit up

    so anyway nobody knew how to get rid of them from that area.. but I just found this article.. apparently due to natural forces they were driven back out through the canal into the harbour, and now they cant get back in. there was like 70,000 of them in there and now they are almost all gone. yay!

    Carp leave Cootes Paradise - thestar.com

    Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
  10. I_bRAD

    I_bRAD TRIBE Member

    those aren't the same carp
  11. Eclectic

    Eclectic TRIBE Member

  12. recoil

    recoil TRIBE Member

    really? well whatever the ones in Cootes Paradise were, they're carp, they aren't native, and they're huge. I'll find out what they are today

    edit... I actually just watched that video - lol. those ones look way smaller and skinnier than the ones in Cootes
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
  13. I_bRAD

    I_bRAD TRIBE Member

    Those are regular carp, which are also an introduced species but one that was introduced in the late 1800s. They are pretty invasive too!

    Perhaps SK8 will chime in with more technical details!

    edit: from wikipedia:

    Last edited: Oct 6, 2010
  14. Kinger

    Kinger TRIBE Member

    Why don't they just let them in and make them do something useful like build a new railroad.
  15. sk8

    sk8 TRIBE Member

    I'm here!! CARP SUCK.

    Yes - the ones in Cootes are/were common carp. They are everywhere in the Great Lakes system - they are the really big ones that you usually see. The main issue with them is that they cause a lot of disturbance and turbidity which damages habitat and spawning areas of native fish. Some rivers/streams in have carp exclusion gates and other control methods to try to contain their spread. i.e. they will be removed from a wetland or other sensitive are and exclusion gates installed on waterways to prevent recolonization.

    A lot of these species get in through intentional release by the food fish industry - which is where we think the grass carp are coming from (there was one in the Don River a while back). The ones that jump and smack you are the silver and bighead - we don't have those here and there are barriers and plans in place so hopefully we never do.

    For invasive species a really good comprehensive website is OFAH - O.F.A.H. Invading Species Awareness Program

    They have an excellent invasives awareness program for everything, not just fish.

    Here's their carp page - O.F.A.H. Invading Species Awareness Program
  16. Aerius Zension

    Aerius Zension TRIBE Member

  17. alexd

    alexd Administrator Staff Member

    They would be like fish out of water, except with sledgehammers.
  18. saskboy

    saskboy TRIBE Member

    a total lack of spatial awareness, those fish
  19. Psyrel

    Psyrel TRIBE Member

    This won't be a problem if Chicago just closed their Sanitary and Ship canal.
  20. djglobalkiller

    djglobalkiller TRIBE Promoter

    they should have a hunting season for them, and give a per pound basis, ... use the fish as chum for feed and bait fishing..

    kind of like the bounty on kangaroos, and other invasive animals
  21. recoil

    recoil TRIBE Member

    lol. Kangaroos aren't an invasive species. They're native to Australia, and not found anywhere else. The real invasive species over there are humans.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2010

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