Strategies for Population Control of Bighead (Hypophthalmichthys nobilis) and Silver Carp (H. molitrix): A Market-Based Approach
Maylen, Rose Alexandria
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Invasive species, as defined by the Invasive Species Advisory Committee of the US government, are “an alien (or non-native) species whose introduction does or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm or harm to human health.” Two species that meet these criteria and have gained a lot of attention over the past 20 years are the Bighead and Silver Carp, broadly given the title ’Asian Carp.’ In the 1970s, Bighead and Silver Carp were imported to the United States with the intent of using their planktivorous appetites to improve water quality in aquaculture farm and water treatment plants. However, flooding allowed for their entrance into the Upper Mississippi River System and they quickly spread North into the Midwest, outcompeting native fish species along the way. Silver and Bighead Carp are known to cause not only environmental damage to their non-native regions but millions of dollars in economic losses. Much of the current work being conducted is targeted toward keeping these Carp species out of The Great Lakes.