Mississippi aims to send carp back to China

TUNICA COUNTY, Miss. — Megan Bollet came to Tunica Lake more than ten years ago for its peace and tranquility, and especially for the water.

Since then, things have changed drastically.

Asian carp, some more than a foot long, invaded the lake several years ago, making these waters dangerous.

”It’s bad. People have been injured. My neighbors have been injured. They jump. It’s hard do ski, it’s hard to fish, it’s hard to swim.”

The carp also eat the native fish.

But just last week, Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed a deal to let a Chinese company remove all the carp from area lakes and rivers.

Moon River foods will invest $3 million and hire one hundred people to harvest the fish to send back to Chinese dinner tables.

The Chinese hope to harvest 25 million pounds of carp every year. That’s about 44 times the amount Mississippi fishermen caught in 2010.

Bollet actually saw inspectors from Moon River at Tunica Lake recently, and helped make the case for the deal.

”They just want to know is it really something, a problem, is it something they can help eradicate and it definitely is, and I think they know that now.”

She looks forward to making the lake safer, so she won’t have to deal with jumping fish, next time she’s on the water.

”Part about living down here is that the lake is all the glory, I mean, it’s paradise.”

She hopes within a couple of years, she’ll get her paradise back.

3 comments

  • Pam

    When you catch one, cut off the head and put it back in the lake for the catfish and turtles to eat, or throw it way up shore like you would a gar. Invasive species!

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