Updated: Tuesday, 17 Aug 2010, 6:45 PM EDT
Published : Tuesday, 17 Aug 2010, 6:44 PM EDT
VINCENNES, Ind. (WTHI) - A fish once viewed as an oddity is now a nuisance and an economic threat.
The asian carp was brought to the U.S. to help fish farms in the south keep ponds clean.
Those fish are now throughout the midwest, creating unnerving moments for unsuspecting boaters.
The invasive species is creating all kinds of headaches.
They pop out of the Wabash River without any notice and they next thing you know they are flopping around inside your boat.
Asian carp are a menace for boaters on the Wabash River and just about any waterway in Indiana these days.
"They'll jump in your boat," said Indiana Conservation Officer Joe Haywood, "They'll fly up and hit you. Someone could get injured from one of these fish."
Even people who spend their days trying to land the big one don't like the carp.
"They're the nastiest things because they get in the boat with and they stink and they're slimy," said Keith Robinson, a fisherman from Vincennes.
The fish are drawn to the boat motor.
In just a little more than an hour on the river we had a half dozen jump in and join us.
The bigger concern is the impact these invaders are having on the native fish in Indiana's rivers.
"We may not know for years ahead what kind of damage they're actually going to do to our other fish," said Haywood.
The asian carp showed up on the Wabash River in Knox County about 5 years ago, and now that they're here authorities say they're not sure of any way to get rid of them.
They do say when you have a close encounter with one of the flyers don't just throw it back.
"What we normally do is throw them on the bank and let the coons eat them or the eagles or something," said Haywood.
The fish have now taken a firm hold on Hoosier waterways.
"I guess we got to put up with them because they're here," said Robinson.
And it doesn't appear they'll be leaving anytime soon.
The asian carp has become such a threat that measures are being taken to try and keep them from moving into the Great Lakes.
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