• There are four Asian carp: bighead, silver, black and grass. Most concern revolves around bighead and silver carp.
• Bighead carp grow up to 4 feet long and 100 pounds. Silver carp are up to 3 feet long and 60 pounds.
• Silver carp have become stars on YouTube because they leap into the air when aggravated by boats. Flying fish have caused serious injuries to humans.
• The fish were brought from Asia to catfish farms and sewage plants in the southern United States in the early 1960s. They were imported to eat unwanted algae, vegetation and sewage. In the 1980s, the fish escaped during flooding and made their way north up the Mississippi River and its tributaries.
• They are found in 18 states. Silver and bighead carp make up more than 90 percent of the biomass in some streams.
• Silver and bighead carp eat plankton that other fish need as food. Asian carp can eat as much as 20 pounds of plankton per day.
• The carp need 40 to 60 miles of free-flowing streams with no dams in order to spawn.
There is a video on identifying Asian carp at www.youtube.com/watch?v=B49OWrCRs38
Anyone capturing a suspected Asian carp is asked to contact the ODNR immediately at 1-800-WILDLIFE. Photograph the fish from head to tail and retain the fish on ice. Photos should be sent to www.wildohio.com by clicking on the Asian carp link and following directions.
— Bob Downing