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Asian carp

lots of asian carp jumping out of water
Ye.Sergey / Adobe Stock

Invasive Asian Carp may pose a greater threat to the Great Lakes than previously feared, according to a new report from the University of Michigan.

Grass carp
USGS

Michigan and Ohio crews are on the lookout this summer for invasive grass carp.

The grass carp survey is being done by the Michigan Department of Natural Resource's Grass Carp Response Team.

steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Environmentalists are calling on presidential candidates to commit to doing more to protect the Great Lakes. 

The "Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition" has a 5-point action plan they’d like to see candidates adopt. 

Asian carp jumping out of water
michiganoutofdoors.com

A bipartisan delegation of Michigan lawmakers from Congress are in Chicago today at the Brandon Road Lock and Dam. The delegation is there to see the facility and discuss possible solutions to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes.

Brandon Road Lock and Dam is considered by many to be the last line of defense from preventing carp from entering the Great Lakes. The Army Corps of Engineers released a plan in May that proposed a number of deterrents to meet the carp as they swim through the waterway, including noisemakers, electric currents, and an air bubble curtain. Huge populations of Asian carp, particularly bighead and silver carp, are reported to be only four miles from the dam.

Asian Carp
Kate Gardiner / Flickr - http://bit.ly/1rFrzRK

Today on Stateside, after years of scandal and leadership turmoil, the Michigan State University Board of Trustees have named Samuel Stanley Jr. as MSU's new president. Plus, why the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are recommending a $778 million plan to keep invasive Asian carp out of the Great Lakes.

Asian carp
USGS

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has saigned off on a $778 million plan intended to keep Asian carp from invading the Great Lakes.

The money would be used to upgrade a lock and dam in Illinois. But the proposal still needs Congressional approval.

Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee

In yet another sign that invasive Asian carp could be inching closer to Lake Michigan, researchers with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have found environmental DNA of two species of carp in a lake that's just a few miles from Lake Michigan.

Environmental DNA comes from things like fish scales. It's an indicator that the fish could be present.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Plans for an enhanced barrier to try to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes might have just taken a crucial step forward.

The plan would fortify the existing Brandon Road Lock and Dam near Joliet, Ill. to attempt to block carp from getting to Lake Michigan.

The project just got a signoff from the Illinois governor to go into a pre-construction and design phase.

Molly Flanagan is with the Alliance for the Great Lakes. She says it’s a big project, but it’s an essential one to keep invasive Asian carp out of the lakes.

US Fish and Wildlife Service / FLICKR - HTTP://BIT.LY/1XMSZCG

More than 200 hunting, fishing, conservation, and outdoor recreation industry groups have submitted public comments in favor of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' plan to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes by constructing new technologies at the Brandon Road Lock and Dam outside Chicago.

The Soo Locks in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan
USACOE

Michigan's U.S. Senators want an update from the Army Corps of Engineers on whether it plans to divert money away from Great Lakes projects, including the Soo Locks, dredging, and efforts to combat Asian carp.

Mackinac Bridge
Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, an environmental law expert breaks down the legal questions involved in a lame-duck session-approved plan to replace a section of Enbridge's Line 5 twin pipelines under the Straits of Mackinac. Plus, Michigan Radio sports commentator John U. Bacon weighs in on the University of Michigan’s hiring - and subsequent firing - of a consultant who left USA Gymnastics amid fallout from the Larry Nassar scandal.

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below. 

A silver carp laying on top of a cooler.
COURTESY OF ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner declined an offer $8 million to protect the Great Lakes from Asian carp. Governor Snyder offered the funds to support construction of high-tech, anti-carp features at the Brandon Road Lock and Dam in Joliet, Illinois.

ASIAN CARP REGIONAL COORDINATING COMMITTEE

Michigan’s outgoing governor is trying to convince his counterpart in Illinois to support a project aimed at keeping asian carp out of Lake Michigan.

Asian carp are seen as a threat to the Great Lakes fishing industry. The invasive fish has moved up from the Deep South along the Mississippi River basin, reaching a point several miles from Lake Michigan.

Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released a costly final draft of its plan to keep invasive Asian carp out of Lake Michigan.

But environmentalists say it will be worth every penny.

The plan at the Brandon Road Lock and Dam, about 60 miles south of Chicago, would cost about $775 million.   

Drew YoungeDyke is with the National Wildlife Federal.  He says the cost, although dramatically higher than the Corps' first draft plan, would be a small fraction of the cost to the fishing industry, if Asian carp got into the lakes.

Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee

The Asian carp action plan for this year is out. It's the plan U.S. and Canadian agencies put together to try to stop carp from spreading.

Charlie Wooley is the deputy regional director for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Midwest region. 

“The most important priorities for us in controlling Asian carp is to keep them out of the Great Lakes,” he says.

Preserve the Great Lakes ecosystem

Apr 18, 2018
Asian Carp
Kate Gardiner / Flickr - http://bit.ly/1rFrzRK

I woke up this morning thinking about Asian carp.

I’d noticed that our state Senate spent much of yesterday doing things like voting to cut funding for those trying to get off Medicaid.

Meanwhile, despite the fact that many urban areas like Ann Arbor are overrun with white-tailed deer, the state House was voting to outlaw sterilizing them. I can’t imagine why anyone would say that our lawmakers don’t have their priorities straight.

The Great Lakes, the budget, and you

Mar 26, 2018
satellite map of Michigan, the Great Lakes
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Congress passed a budget that gets us through the summer, Donald Trump has signed it, and it contains good news for all of us. For one thing, it means we have again dodged a government shutdown, at least till September.

For another, for the second year in a row, Congress has mostly reversed all the bad things the Trump administration wanted to do to Michigan. That would have included eliminating funds to protect the nation’s most important source of fresh water, a $300 million dollar program called the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.

Mr Niceguy / FLICKR - http://bit.ly/1xMszCg

It’s been a busy week in Lansing, between Governor Rick Snyder calling for a variety of policies in the Detroit Free Press, and Democrats and Republicans working together on a controversial tax bill.

Ken Sikkema, senior policy fellow at Public Sector Consultants and former Republican Majority Leader in the Michigan Senate, and Vikki Barnett, former mayor of Farmington Hills and a former Democratic legislator, joined Stateside to discuss the week’s political news.

Asian carp leaping out of a river.
Great Lakes Fishery Commission

On Wednesday, Gov. Rick Snyder announced an interstate partnership with leaders of the Great Lakes states to reduce the risk of invasive carp from entering the Great Lakes by strengthening defenses in a Chicago-area waterway. Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Ontario are the founding members of the partnership, representing more than 90% of the Great Lakes surface area.

The initiative contributes to reducing costs of upgrading the Brand Road Lock and Dam near Joliet, Illinois, a key choke point between the carp-infested Illinois River and Lake Michigan.

Grass carp
USGS

There are several federal agencies in charge of trying to control Asian carp, and they just came out with their latest report to Congress on how those efforts are going.

image of Asian carp at the Shedd Aquarium
Kate Gardiner / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

People worried about Asian carp infecting the Great Lakes have been anxiously awaiting a long-overdue carp "battle plan" from the Army Corps of Engineers — a report held up for six months by the Trump Administration.

Now the Army Corps is free to talk details, and as it does, the reaction among some in Michigan is disappointment and disbelief.

That's because the Army Corps says it will take eight years — until 2025 — to get this fix in place.

Asian carp jumping out of water
michiganoutofdoors.com

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers held a public meeting in Muskegon last night on its $275.4 million plan to keep invasive fish species out of the Great Lakes.

A recent study found that electric barriers and complex noises, like the sound of boat motors, are the most effective ways to keep certain fish away. So the plan to keep Asian carp out of Lake Michigan includes both.

A grass carp.
Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee

Scientists say they've confirmed the discovery of grass carp eggs in a tributary of Lake Erie.

Grass carp are among four species of Asian carp that pose a threat to the Great Lakes. The most feared are silver and bighead carp, which eat plankton and could destabilize food chains. But grass carp are also a problem because they eat huge amounts of valuable plants.

The Great Lakes Fishery Commission says state, federal and university scientists analyzed eggs collected from the Sandusky River in Ohio earlier this summer.

They've now concluded they were grass carp eggs.

Courtesy Photo / Asian Carp Regional Coordinating Committee

A necropsy (basically an autopsy for a fish) of the eight-pound Asian carp found just nine miles from the Great Lakes is finished. It shows that the fish was born and raised in central Illinois; proof for some that the barrier isn’t strong enough.

Asian carp
USGS

An Asian carp was caught this summer in a place where it shouldn’t be – beyond an electric barrier meant to keep the species out of Lake Michigan and the rest of the Great Lakes. Now, a researcher at Southern Illinois University is trying to figure out just how it got there.

A silver carp laying on top of a cooler.
COURTESY OF ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released a long-anticipated study on ways to prevent Asian carp from spreading from the Mississippi River system to the Great Lakes through a manmade canal.

Tammy Newcomb, a senior water policy advisor for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, joined Stateside today to explain which kinds of Asian carp threaten the Great Lakes and why. 

Asian carp leaping out of a river.
Great Lakes Fishery Commission

When scientists were working on the top-secret Manhattan Project to build the atomic bomb, there was a brief moment when some thought there was a small chance it might ignite the entire atmosphere.

Which would have meant good-bye life on earth. Enrico Fermi, who had a puckish sense of humor, took bets on whether the test of the bomb would destroy the world, or only New Mexico.

A bird's-eye view of the Brandon Road Lock and Dam, with illustrations of preventative measures to stop invasive species from entering the Great lakes Basin, as outlined in the USACE's "Tenatively Adopted Plan"
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released a draft report outlining possible strategies to better protect the Great Lakes from Asian carp and other invasive species.

Asian carp at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium.
Kate Gardiner / Creative Commons

On Monday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will release a study detailing the best ways to prevent Asian carp from getting into the Great Lakes.

A document outlining the study says the current defense – an underwater electric barrier – should be beefed up. The recommended plan would add complex noises – like the underwater recordings of a boat motor.

asian carp on bucket
COURTESY OF ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it will release a previously delayed report on measures that could be taken at an Illinois waterway chokepoint to prevent Asian carp from reaching the Great Lakes.

The corps says the report involving the Brandon Road Lock and Dam will be made public Aug. 7. Project manager Andrew Leichty says it will evaluate "structural and non-structural options and technologies."

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