Asian carp could become most common fish in Lake Erie, study warns
Asian carp takeover could reduce numbers of popular sport species like walleye and rainbow trout
A new study warns Asian carp could become the most common fish in Lake Erie if the ravenous invaders develop a breeding population there.
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The study, based on computer models, projects that Asian carp species could eventually make up about one-third of the total fish weight in Lake Erie, which has the most fish of the five Great Lakes. It was conducted by scientists with several universities and government agencies in the U.S. and Canada.
The study says a successful Asian carp takeover could reduce numbers of popular sport species like walleye and rainbow trout, along with prey species including gizzard shad and emerald shiners.
The research team plans similar modeling of potential Asian carp effects on Lakes Michigan, Huron and Ontario.
Bighead and silver carp were imported to the southern U.S. from Asia decades ago and have migrated northward. They eat tiny plants and animals that other fish need.