Western Illinois University researches Asian Carp mitigation

Jun 17, 2014

Western Illinois University faculty members are researching ways to mitigate Asian carp in the upper Mississippi River basin. IPR’s Emily Boyer reports they’ve received 30-thousand dollars of federal funds for a second year of the study.

Asian carp are highly mobile, able to travel hundreds of miles in the river system and they’re moving north despite the number of dams on the Mississippi.   Jim Lamer, the manager at WIU’s Kibbe Field Station calls it an invasion…  

“So there are a lot of things floating around, efforts to try to control or eradicate them. It’s just they are a very resilient species. Very adaptable and it’s just like they are the perfect invader coming through here.” 

Lamer and WIU biology professor Sean Jenkins are focusing on Pool 19 near Keokuk. That’s a shallow portion of the river with lots of vegetation.  They’re examining the fish’s habitat and impact on native species.

Lamer spent much of last year collecting potential predators and will be testing their diets this year for traces of Asian carp.  The findings of the study are shared with organizations up river that are also examining mitigation efforts.