Three more Asian carp have been found in Toronto — bringing the total number of the invasive fish caught near the city to five.
Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA) say their officers caught two fish on Tuesday and another on Monday in the waters around the Toronto Islands marina off Lake Ontario. The three Asian Grass Carp, one of several species in a group of fish known as Asian Carp, were sent to a Fisheries and Oceans Canada laboratory in Burlington for further investigation.
The first fish found was 23 pounds, the second weighed 36 pounds and the third was 20 pounds.
Asian carp are native to east Asia and have been used in North America as a food source and a means for managing aquatic vegetation. But the carp had a negative overall effect on the ecosystem.
Grass Carp feed extensively on aquatic vegetation, often uprooting large areas of vegetation, thus depleting other native fish populations.
Carp are not native to Ontario. Even the Common Carp currently found in Lake Ontario were introduced to the lake in the 1800s.
Two other Asian carp were discovered in July in Tommy Thompson Park. The TRCA says it is still unclear how the fish got to Ontario, or what the potential ecological impact might be.
TRCA is urging anyone who sees an Asian carp to call the Invading Species hotline at 1-800-563-7711.