Asian Carp Invasion - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Asian Carp Invasion

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YAZOO COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

The effects of the "Great Flood of 2011" are appearing in the waters near the Mississippi River.

Fish that could threaten the livelihood of game fish are showing up where they have never been before.

Using a boat to agitate the fish, Mississippi Wildlife Fisheries and Parks biologists are on Lake George, monitoring the Asian Carp populations.

These carp have grown into adults, some over 20 pounds in weight, brought in by floodwaters more than ten years ago.

"These carp were able to reproduce in the floodwaters then they moved as the water receded," said Wildlife Biologist Jerry Brown. "The small fish went into the lake."

The fish have the unique ability to breach the water and can even jump in a boat. More of the fish were introduced to more Mississippi lakes in the 2011 flood, now threatening native fish species. 

"They can compete with your native shad or if these carp compete with the native shad for food we may see a decline in the number of forest fish from our other predators to eat such as bass and crappie," said Brown.

Not only are the Asian carp a threat to the native fish, but they can also be a danger to recreational boaters.

Brown says, "As you've seen them jump in the water they could cause injury to boaters, skiers, people on jet ski's, really messy with blood and slime all over your boat whenever they do jump, not to mention the fact they can hurt you."

The fish are only known to spawn in currents, so the hope is these carp now in Mississippi won't reproduce. But, these are adults and they're high in numbers. Experts say there's no proven way to stop them from spreading.

Smaller Asian Carp were found in Wolf Lake shortly after the flood.  This fall, biologists say they will check Eagle Lake for the pesky fish, a place where they have never been before.

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