Asian Carps are a threat to native fish

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Overview

The Asian carp is an species of fish that is native to Asia. It was brought to North America in 1960 to 70. Since then it has made its way into great lakes through US waterways. There are four different types of Asian carps, the Silver carp, Bighead carp, Black carp and Grass carp. The term Asian carp is used when talking about these fish generally. 

Things to know

Asian carps are already in our water but they haven't settled. Those fish are taking over our native species, here are somethings to know about this invasive species,

  • They eat up to 40% of their weight a day
  • It is possible for them to grow up to 25 cm in their first year
  • They typically weigh two to four kilograms 
  • They reproduce rapidly

Their impact

The Asian carps are bad for our waters. They are yet be become established but once they do it will have some negative impacts on the water and whats in it. If these fish become establish they could eat all of our native fishes food supply. Like I stated in the last section they eat up to 40% of their body weight a day. By eating like this they could potentially crowd the native fish in the area out of their habits.

With the decline in native fish in the water there is also a decline in spot, commercial and recreational fishing. Those three things bring in millions of dollars to Canada's economics.  

With the Asian carps crowding out native fish it makes fisherman's jobs harder because it’s “drowning” out other fish species. It also makes recreational fishing difficult. This is because fisherman don’t wanna catch one type of fish. 

Government regulations

The government is using a process called electrofishing, although electrofishing sounds bad for the fish it is harmless. What it does is stun the fish for short period of time to allow them to properly inspected them. This process, if done right, will not harm the fish long term. Electrofishing helps scientist examine the marine life in the rivers.

The second thing that the government is doing is getting environmental DNA samples. This helps monitor the spread of Asian carps by seeing which body's of water they have spread to.  



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