Skip to comments.Asian Carp Fish Kill Near 500,000 on Cumberland River
Posted on 04/25/2014 11:54:43 PM PDT by Paul R.
Scientists are studying the cause of a massive fish kill in western Kentucky, which state wildlife officials are saying is the largest kill of its kind recorded.
(Excerpt) Read more at wkms.org ...
"So the bad news; it really smells like dead fish around Barkley Dam. The good news, a bunch of silver carp have died. Maybe we are on to some type of natural control mechanism."
I'm trying to not think about what 1/2 million dead LARGE fish smell like. And so much for any thought of driving all the way to Barkley Dam to go fishing anytime soon!
I think I'll pick some other location to go fishing today...
When there is a massive carp die off, unless it is a specific biological problem for the carp, that doesn’t really bode well for other fish species in the water either. IIRC, carp would live just about anywhere.
Since only silver carp were affected, you can rule out water quality issues. You can rule out chemical spills. Basically rule out things that would have typically killed shad (easiest fish to kill) and all other species. The likely cause is a viral infection. It is possible that during the high water, a higher than normal density of silver carp came up the Cumberland River. They all congregated below the dam. With a super high density in a small area, a communicable disease quickly spread. This lead to the the fish kill. To possibly verify this theory, a few live but sick silver carp (fish found swimming lethargically) at the waters surface, where taken to Frankfort this afternoon. These fish will be examined by fish pathologist at Kentucky State University.
We talked to a few anglers fishing in the Tailwaters today (amongst the dead fish)... The report is Striped bass, white bass and catfish are still biting. One boat had 7 nice size striped bass in about two hours.
As for shad, my uncle had a recipie for them. He called it "planked shad". Nail the fish to a soft plank, and leave it in the sun. When the fish falls off the plank, pull the nail, take the plank in and eat it (all of the flavor, none of the bones).
That just can’t smell good.
Apparently lots more are up on the banks, as the water has gone down ~10 feet recently. Yuck.
Most of the video at the link below is from the KY Dam tailwaters, with a few shots of the situation below Barkley Dam: I would not be surprised if the reporterette (or anyone else) could not keep from gagging while over at Barkley.
I was thinking of going to the KY Dam or Barkley Dam tailwaters sometime, to collect a few fresh carp from the snaggers, to use as cut catfish bait, or even garden fertilizer, but, uh, maybe not...
I met a lady there who lost her husband after five years of eating fish every
week. he never gave any attention to the warnings and died of cancer. There
are many stories like these from the locals near the river. Sledge from a spill
that happened in the early 1900's still exists on the bottom of the Ohio, also.
Haha - yeah, I’ve heard that same “eat the plank” recipe for several types of not-so-great fish to eat.
Actually, the Asian carp are claimed to be decent eating, but bony unless filleted correctly (leaving about 1/2 the meat as throw-away) - but the bones might not deter my Asian wife at all... I’ve read that operations are springing up to export carp meat to Asia.
My own speculation is that the many new record blue catfish being caught may be in part to them feeding on the hyper-abundant carp. Not that I am interested in such: It’s the smaller channel cat “fiddlers” that are “good eatin’.”
An experiment by the feds? People are frantic trying to prevent them from entering the Great Lakes because they would destroy the lakes. Maybe the feds released a bacteria that only kills Asian carp.
Cat fish LOVE dead fish....
Nah, you’ve just gotta watch which waters you fish in (to eat from), not eat fish all the time, and mostly stick with eating the smaller fish. Granted, I would not eat fish out of the Ohio River on a bet. There are some really nice clean smaller lakes in S. Illinois and S. Indiana, too.
Most of the mercury in ponds and smaller lakes is actually from old coal burning plants and such, and much of it is slowly diminishing, with some new ponds actually showing quite low levels. (If in doubt I e-mail the fisheries guys and get the data from them.) An interesting fact is that most of the mercury in waters not contaminated years ago or by some particular local source is coming from, get this, China.
On the other hand, some of the locals are not too bright. In one area near us that was contaminated by an old coal power plant, the local fish & wildlife service put up signs warning of the mercury, but locals fished those ponds anyway. So, the fish & wildlife people exterminated all the fish, but the locals promptly restocked ‘em and commenced fishing again. Finally, the WMA (Wildlife Management Area) and the local bass club got together and built a really nice big pond with good access, so most people go there. The only thing I’d hesitate to eat out of there would be a large bass or (if it is still there) the 50 lb. blue cat from the river some guy claims to have put in that pond.
Unlikely - the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service works closely with the State level people. However, the best case might be one in which the Asian carp are dying from something the native fish have resistance to. Sort of like the ending of “War of the Worlds”, IF we are lucky.
I think it’s amazing all these invasive species can do so well. If we travel to other countries we need shots to protect us from germs in that country. But these invasive species aren’t even slowed down. They wipe everything out.
An Asian carp traveled to this country and killed half a million people?? This is absolutely shocking news!!
Maybe all that money we invested in biological warfare is finally paying off?
I thought I’d read awhile back that the Asian carp are taking our waters over killing out other species like the crappie, bass, catfish, spoonbill, etc.???? So maybe this isn’t such a bad thing?
....”People are frantic trying to prevent them from entering the Great Lakes because they would destroy the lakes”....
That’s right...I knew the Asian Carp sounded familiar to me, and not exactly in a good light. I’m here in the East so I recall the ‘very real concern’ about just that.
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