Asian Carp Asian Carp

Asian Carp - PowerPoint Presentation

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Uploaded On 2016-02-20

Asian Carp - PPT Presentation

Fisheries and Wildlife What do they look like What are Asian Carp Two species of Asian carp the silver and bighead are a potential threat to the Great Lakes They are large invasive filterfeeding fish capable of consuming vast quantities of plant and animal plankton daily They have bec ID: 224914

asian carp lakes fish carp asian fish lakes silver great electrical river bighead species michigan lake large mississippi water canal barriers rivers




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Asian Carp

Fisheries and WildlifeSlide2

What do they look like?Slide3

What are Asian Carp?

Two species of Asian carp - the silver and bighead - are a potential threat to the Great Lakes. They are large, invasive, filter-feeding fish capable of consuming vast quantities of plant and animal plankton daily. They have become established in the rivers along the Mississippi River drainage and are just a few miles from Lake Michigan.Slide4

Big Head Carp

Can weigh up to 90


and be nearly 5 feet in length Can consume up to 40% of their body weight daily Have a very large head and toothless mouth Adult fish are dark gray with dark blotches Eyes sit below the mouthSlide6

Silver Carp

Are smaller than the bighead

Can weigh up to 60

lbs and exceed 3 feet in length Are light silver in color with a white belly Eyes sit below the mouthSlide7

Grass Carp

Can be more than 5 feet long and weigh more than 80


Have large scales that appear crosshatched Eyes sit even with the mouthSlide8

How did they get here?

Asian carp were imported in the southern United States by the aquaculture industry to control algae in ponds. Because of flooding, the fish escaped their ponds and became established in the Mississippi River. Slide9

Why are Asian Carp a problem?

Because of their large size, voracious appetites and spawning processes, Asian carp can out-compete native species for both food and habitat. Bighead carp reach 100 pounds and can consume up to 40 percent of their body weight daily. Silver carp, although smaller than bigheads, have a habit of jumping out of the water when disturbed by boat motors, creating a safety hazard. Both species can spawn multiple times annually, quickly displacing native species. Biologists believe Asian carp could disrupt the entire Great Lakes ecosystem - and even move inland - if they become established here. Slide10

What is being done to stop them?

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has built a pair of electrical barriers in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, a man-made canal that links the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River. Because recent environmental DNA testing indicated that the carp might have breached the electrical barriers, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources recently treated the area with the fish toxicant rotenone, to kill any carp that might have been in the area. Slide11

How is MI involved in this?

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources supplied rotenone and neutralizing chemicals to Illinois as well as sending a pair of fisheries division crew to participate in the treatment. Meanwhile, the Michigan Attorney General's office is studying potential legal procedures to close the locks on the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal to prevent further migration of fish.Slide12

What can the public do?

Asian carp are just one example of the potential problems caused by the unintentional translocation of aquatic species. Recreational boaters and anglers should take all precautions to prevent transferring organisms from one body of water to another. Live wells and bilges should be drained every time a boat is removed from a body of water and disinfected before the boat is returned to the water. Slide13

Asian Carp Facts

Seven carp species that are native to Asia have been introduced into the United States: bighead carp, black carp, grass carp, silver carp, common carp, goldfish, and


carp. The "Asian carp" term used in the media recently tends to include those species most recently introduced that are of grave biological concern to the fisheries management community: bighead carp, silver carp and black carp. Slide14

Asian Carp Facts

Asian carp migrate up streams or rivers to breed; eggs and larvae float downstream to develop. These fish are fast growing, weighing up to 100 pounds. Asian carp are also highly prolific producing up to 1,000,000 eggs.


and silver carp are filter feeders, straining tiny animals and plants (plankton) out of the water. By eating plankton, the carp compete with native filter feeding fish such as lake whitefish, as well as the young life stages of many fish species such as walleye and yellow perch. This competition for food can potentially disrupt the entire food web in a water body. Slide15

Asian Carp Facts

Bighead and silver carp were imported into the Southeastern U.S. in the 1970s to remove algae and suspended matter out of catfish farm ponds and wastewater treatment ponds. During large floods in the mid 1990s, some of the ponds overflowed their banks and the Asian carp were released into local waterways in the Mississippi River Basin.


Concern to Michigan Bighead and silver carp are spreading to lakes, rivers and streams in the Mississippi River and Great Lakes region, but are not yet established in the Great Lakes. Their populations have doubled annually, with the fastest expansions occurring in the Missouri and Illinois Rivers. They are well-suited to the climate of the Great Lakes region, which is similar to that in their native region in Asia, and these carp particularly favor large rivers and connecting lakes. The Illinois River connects the Mississippi River to Lake Michigan through the Des Plaines River and a series of artificial and natural waterways in the Chicago area. Slide16

Asian Carp Facts

Researchers expect that Asian carp will disrupt the food chain that supports the native fish of the Great Lakes, such as walleye, yellow perch, and lake whitefish.


to their large size and rapid rate of reproduction, bighead and silver carp pose a significant threat to the ecosystem of the Great Lakes Basin. Silver carp leap high out of the water when disturbed by watercraft. Boaters can and have been injured by these leaping fish. Fear of injury could diminish the desire for recreational boating activities in areas inhabited by these fish. Slide17

Actions to prevent the spread

The Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal connects the Mississippi River to the Great Lakes via the Illinois and Des Plaines Rivers.

To prevent Asian carp from entering the Great Lakes, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. EPA, the State of Illinois, the International Joint Commission, the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have worked to install and maintain two permanent electrical barriers on the Canal to keep Asian carp from reaching Lake Michigan. An electrical barrier strategy was selected, rather than a permanent barrier, to allow for movement of barges through the waterway. The electrical barrier system on the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal is not a fail-safe system. Although an electrical barrier acts to repel the fish, it doesn't kill them.

At issue also are several other geographical locations above the electrical barriers whereby Asian carp could reach Lake Michigan if they succeeded in moving past the electrical barriers. In December 2009 during maintenance of the electrical barriers that required the barriers to be turned off, a segment of the Canal was rotenoned (poisoned) to remove all species of fish in the area and prevent movement of fish through the area while the maintenance was occurring. During this event, an Asian carp was found in the vicinity of the electrical barrier. Furthermore, DNA evidence indicates that there are bighead and silver carp above the barrier. Silver carp DNA has been detected in the Calumet River and Calumet Harbor on Lake Michigan.Slide18

Where are they?Slide19