Developing food attractants for silver carp that can be used to induce aggregation and control them: a new biochemical tool

Project manager: Peter Sorensen

Funded by: Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund as recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources

Phase I Description: This project will identify and develop chemical food attractants for Asian carp that could be used with the poison nanoparticles currently being developed by the USGS laboratory. Understanding how to optimize food and sex pheromones function in the lab will allow researchers to develop ways to apply sensory cues to attract carp and stimulate aggregation.

In addition to knowing where these mobile and invasive fish are, we would ideally also be able to stimulate them to aggregate in specific locations using attractants. Common carp and Asian carp are social animals that tend to aggregate, so this approach has great promise. Furthermore, initial work with radio-tagged common carp has already demonstrated that these fish will quickly locate aggregating groups of conspecifics in the winter when the entire group can be located and removed by seining (Judas fish technique). We will also develop food and /or sex pheromone attractants (that could even be released by Judas fish) to stimulate aggregations outside of the winter months in ways we can also control.

Project start date: 2012

Project end date: 2016; Phase 2 -- Attracting carp so their presence can be accurately assessed -- to continue through 2018

Progress and updates: