Although the major wild populations of two species of Asian carp (bighead and silver) are still thought to be limited to the Mississippi basin, Bighead Carp were collected in Lake Erie in 1995 and 2000 and reported (unconfirmed) in 2002 and 2003. They were also discovered in the Ohio River in 2002 in close proximity to the Lake Erie watershed.
How do we do it?
From 2004 to 2012, the LGLFWCO conducted early detection and monitoring in western Lake Erie in Sandusky and Toledo, OH using trammel nets and electrofishing in response to these discoveries. In 2013, USFWS from the Alpena FWCO used eDNA techniques to monitor for Asian carp species in Lake Erie. This method is much more effective at detecting these species at low population levels than traditional methods. In 2014, the LGLFWCO joined the basin-wide initiative, working cooperatively with NYS DEC and staff from Alpena FWCO to expand monitoring efforts in both Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.