Invasive carp species pose a significant threat to native fisheries, disrupting ecological balances, inflicting economic harm and hampering recreational activities. One effort to mitigate this threat is focused on blocking these fish from entering the Great Lakes, where they could significantly disrupt a $7-billion fishing industry.

Guided by ERDC research, a series of electric barriers was placed along a key navigable link between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River. ERDC continues to study additional methods to prevent carp passage, including the use of sound or carbon dioxide bubbles. ERDC’s research on this topic is part of a greater effort to protect endangered species in our nation’s waterways and manage invasive species in our fisheries.

On the latest episode of the Power of ERDC podcast, we talk with Alan Katzenmeyer, chief of the Aquatic Ecology and Invasive Species branch at ERDC’s Environmental Laboratory.

We discuss why the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is involved in managing invasive and endangered species (6:32), why there is so much focus on invasive carp and some of the research ERDC is doing in that area (8:30), and ERDC’s research that led to the electric barriers in the Chicago Area Waterway System (13:50).

We also talk about other ERDC projects to manage invasive and endangered species in our fisheries (17:26), ERDC’s history in this research (28:05), how ERDC is uniquely situated to undertake this research (36:22) and what the future holds for it (38:47).

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