KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Scientists say the discovery of two young black carp in a ditch connected to the Mississippi River is a troubling sign for native species in the river.
Adult black carp have been caught in the Mississippi River before.
But the Missouri Department of Conservation says the discovery near Cape Girardeau in November is the first documented evidence in North America that the invasive species is reproducing in the wild.
Resource scientist Quinton Phelps says black carp are dangerous because they eat mussels, clams and other mollusks, and many of the mussel populations in the Mississippi River are already endangered.
Phelps says it’s highly likely that scientists will confirm more black carp were among several hundred fish conservation department researchers caught.