No Asian carp DNA found in Great Lakes after additional testing


Weeks after a test revealed genetic material from Asian carp in a river that flows into Lake Michigan, additional testing of 200 samples found no DNA evidence of the invasive species near the Great Lakes.

Environmental experts fear that if Asian carp reach the Great Lakes their impact on the ecosystem would be devastating. At risk, according to experts, is the Great Lakes’ $7-billion fishing industry because Asian carp are known for their voracious appetite, feasting on the edible fish that propel the region’s fishing business.

On October 7th and 8th, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources in conjunction with the federal Fish and Wildlife service conducted supplemental testing on the Kalamazoo River in southwest Michigan. This was in response to the discovery of silver carp DNA – a species of Asian carp – earlier in the year.

It is still unknown if the discovered DNA came from a live fish. According to officials, though, there is no evidence that a population of silver carp has established itself in the region. Genetic material traveling on boats or fishing gear, or the droppings of fish-eating birds may have been responsible for the discovery earlier in the year.

Environmental experts are pleased with the recent news, but insist that efforts to stop migration of Asian carp must continue to be amplified.

Officials at Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources assert that anglers and boaters are the first line of defense against invasive species.

The DNR has urged anglers and boaters to thoroughly clean all gear and drain all water from their crafts, because invasive species are known to “hitchhike” between waterways on boats and fishing gear.



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