- Two species of Asian carp — silver and bighead — were originally imported to
control algae in southern catfish farms. Following flooding, they escaped
into the Mississippi River in the early 1990s. They now inhabit the Illinois
River, which connects to the Great Lakes via the Chicago Sanitary and Ship
- Silver and bighead carp consume vast amounts of food and are extremely
prolific. They can weigh up to 100 pounds and grow more than four feet long.
Silver carp can jump from the water when agitated and have been known to
- These species pose a significant threat to the Great Lakes ecosystem due to
their large size, voracious eating habits, and rate of reproduction. Natural
resource managers fear they would upset the food web, decimate native
species, and damage the Great Lakes sport fishery.
See: Details and Overview