Live Asian carp discovered near Lake Michigan
- Author: Zachary Reyes Jun 24, 2017,
Jun 24, 2017, 5:18
The other was a bighead carp caught in 2010 in Chicago's Lake Calumet.
Lawmakers have vowed to fight a proposal by President Donald Trump to de-fund a program called the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative meant to help eight states in the region recover industrial sites in harbors, block invasive species like the Asian carp and stem fertilizer run-off from farmland.
Stabenow also called on the Trump Administration to release an Army Corps study done on Asian Carp and the Great Lakes.
A single live Asian carp was pulled from the Chicago canal Thursday - above an electric barrier system operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. It was sent to a lab for further analysis. O'Brien Lock and Dam in the Calumet River, on Chicago's South Side. Late previous year, the Free Press reported that the leading edge of the silver carp population was some 75 miles from Lake Michigan, though it was advancing.
A fisherman has found a live Asian carp in a Chicago waterway about 9 miles from Lake Michigan, officials said.
Jennifer Caddick, vice president of communication and engagement with the Alliance for the Great Lakes, said the finding highlights the need for urgent action to prevent the fish from entering the Great Lakes.
The Illinois DNR and the ACRCC are committed to learning more about the captured silver carp and continuing their sampling efforts in the Illinois Waterway.
The National Wildlife Federation, in collaboration with Prairie Rivers Network and the Michigan United Conservation Clubs, recently launched an online video series highlighting the jobs and recreational tourism industry at risk if Asian carp invade the Great Lakes.
The fish was 28 inches long and weighed about 8 pounds.
Bighead and silver carp are of special concern because of their voracious appetites for plankton - tiny plants and animals on which almost all fish depend at some point in their live cycles.
"This news is deeply troubling and the threat of Asian carp has always been a concern of this Task Force and experts across the Great Lakes", states the co-chairs in a written statement. They want barriers in the Chicago-area waterways to separate the lakes from the MS system, a step opposed by IL lawmakers who say it would disrupt shipping.
The Army Corps was scheduled to release an interim report in February on measures that could be taken to strengthen defenses against invasive fish at the Brandon Road Lock and Dam on the Des Plaines River in Joliet, Illinois, several miles downstream from the electric barriers.
Democratic Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken of Minnesota and Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, Democratic Rep. Rick Nolan of Minnesota and Republican Rep. Sean Duffy of Wisconsin are among a bipartisan group of lawmakers that introduced a bill this week that would require release of the study. But the Trump administration has delayed making it public.
Senator Stabenow worked with other Great Lakes appropriators to secure language in the Fiscal Year 2016 omnibus that required the Army Corps to establish formal emergency procedures - including rapid response protocols and monitoring - to prevent Asian Carp from reaching Lake Michigan. "If Asian carp are able to gain access and reproduce within the Great Lakes, the environmental and economic damage will be severe".