Another invasive carp catch record for Minnesota's Mississippi River

Invasive carp jumping out of the water

What can we do about the growing number of invasive carp found in Minnesota's waters? Join us at community meetings in St. Paul, Red Wing, Winona and online to learn and plan. (Photo by T. Lawrence, GLFC)

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recently announced its largest-ever catch of invasive carp in Minnesota waters: 323 silver, grass and bighead carp. These fish were caught in Pool 6 of the Mississippi River in southern Minnesota downstream of Winona. 

This catch represents a stunning increase in the number of invasive carp found in this part of the river. The previous largest single catch in Minnesota was 51 fish in 2020. In recent years, invasive carp have been found in increasingly large numbers further and further upstream. 

While it's great that the DNR was able to track and remove 323 carp in one day (and another 87 the next day), it's distressing that the carp were there at all. No one knows for sure how many invasive carp are in Minnesota's waters or how close they are to reaching the population densities needed for successful reproduction.

Legislature considers carp deterrent

At the very same time that fishing crews were removing carp on November 30, the Minnesota Senate's Capital Investment Committee was just upstream at Lock and Dam 5. They visited the river to hear about FMR's funding request to install an invasive carp deterrent system at the lock.

We hope that the Legislature will continue its work this coming year to help Minnesota stop invasive carp — before it's too late to keep them out of Lake Pepin. (Read more about the research behind the invasive carp deterrent proposal.)

Minnesota Senate members listen to someone speak at Lock and Dam 5

Dr. Peter Sorensen, of the University of Minnesota, explains his state-funded invasive carp deterrent research to senators visiting Lock and Dam 5.

Join a community action meeting

Join us at a community action meeting in January or February to hear about the deterrent proposal. You'll also hear from the DNR about their Invasive Carp Action Plan update that's being finalized this month. These interactive events will include opportunities to ask questions, learn and advocate for Minnesota to take every possible action to protect our waters.

FMR and the Lake Pepin Legacy Alliance are co-hosting these events in three Mississippi River cities, as well as virtually:

  • January 24: Red Wing
  • January 30: St. Paul and virtual
  • February 1: Winona  

Learn more and register for these events.

Can't make it? Sign our petition to let Minnesota leaders know that we need more action against invasive carp right now.

In the news

Here are a few local media stories about the latest invasive carp catch:

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