Don’t let silver carp spread any fartherThe many videos on Web of silver carp are almost funny. The fish can often be seen jumping out of the water in the path of a speeding boat.
By: The Jamestown Sun, The Jamestown Sun
The many videos on Web of silver carp are almost funny. The fish can often be seen jumping out of the water in the path of a speeding boat.
Of course, someone in a moving boat who could be struck and injured by a 30-pound airborne carp wouldn’t see the humor.
Aside from the safety issues for boaters, this fish disrupt the vegetation on lake and river bottoms. This increases the mud in the water, damaging the habitat for other fish species.
The silver carp was found for the first time in the northern James River basin last summer. Two fish, one near LaMoure, N.D., and the other just below Jamestown Dam, were identified. It is the farthest north the species has been found in North America.
Finding it here shouldn’t really come as a surprise. Since flooding washed them out of fish farm ponds in Louisiana in the 1970s, the species has multiplied and migrated north up the Mississippi River system. It was only a matter of time before they made it up here.
When they reached the dams on the James River and Pipestem Creek, they were stopped. They will not be able to travel any further north without help from humans.
Let’s make sure that doesn’t happen.
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department prohibits collecting live bait from the James River system. This means no more minnow traps in the river or any of its tributaries. The risk of trapping a silver carp fingerling — which looks much like a minnow — and losing it in another lake is too great.
And the folks at Game and Fish want anglers to bring in any possible silver carp for identification. This will help them determine the number of carp in the river and how quickly they grow and reproduce.
We all have an interest in maintaining the quality of the lakes and rivers in the area. The simple tasks outlined by the North Dakota Game and Fish Department can help.
(Editorials are the opinion of Jamestown Sun management and the newspaper’s editorial board)