Invasive black carp are getting close to Indiana waters.
In June, two black carp were captured in the Ohio River about 10 miles downstream of the Indiana state line. Black carp are native to eastern Asia and were brought to the United States during the 1970-80s. They have since escaped captivity and have been moving throughout the Mississippi River basin.
Black carp feed on mollusks and pose a serious threat to Indiana’s mussel populations. Many of the mussel species native to Indiana are already listed as species of special concern or endangered due to pollution and changes in river habitat. For more information about the important role mussels play in the state’s rivers, visit wildlife.IN.gov/8684.htm.
Although it is possible to catch black carp on traditional baits, bowfishing anglers are more likely to encounter them. Black carp look very similar to grass carp. See the identification sheet at asiancarp.us/Documents/BlackGrassCarpIdentification.PDF to help tell the difference.
If you have caught a suspected black carp, follow the keep, cool, call procedure:
• Keep the fish and make note of its location.
• Cool the fish on ice once you have killed it.
• Call the DNR at 1-866-663-9684 to report the fish.
You may be eligible for a $100 bounty per black carp carcass, funded through the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.