States Work to Defend Appalachia from Invasive Fish

Strategies to prevent the spread of the invasive Asian carp are advancing in several Appalachian states.

State agencies are using barriers in dams and encouraging commercial harvesting to prevent the upstream migration of the fish in the Tennessee River. Multiple agencies and partners are also involved with an experimental sound barrier in Kentucky’s Lake Barkley scheduled to be installed October 1, according to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency Chief of Fisheries Frank Fiss.

“The goal is to get the barriers in place so that we have them contained, and then fish them down, that’s the strategy,” says Fiss.

The Asian carp outcompetes native fish for food and poses risks to boaters due to the jumping behavior of the heavy fish, according to the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife.

While the fish is an environmental threat, the growth of Asian carp populations along the Mississippi River has also led to the rise of fish processing plants and markets for Asian carp consumption. — By Jack Singletary


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