McConnell: Kentucky to use 'unified method' in fight against carp

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will use sonic technology to corral and remove Asian carp from western Kentucky's waterways.

Photo contributed by the U.S. Geological Survey

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will use a "unified method" of fishing to remove Asian carp from western Kentucky's waterways.

The method involves the use of sonic technology to corral the invasive species into a single area, where they can then be removed in large numbers, U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell said in a news release Thursday.

"The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has answered my call to deploy an aggressive strategy to combat these invasive and dangerous species in Lake Barkley and Kentucky Lake. With coordination among several agencies at all levels, we can help protect Kentucky's treasured waters, support our boaters and anglers, and bolster Western Kentucky's $1.2 billion fishing economy," McConnell said in the statement.

The method has proven successful in other countries, and the U.S. Geological Survey has used it effectively in Missouri and Illinois, he said.

Addressing the Asian carp issue has required a collaborative approach from those federal agencies, as well as the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. Judge-Executives Wade White and Kevin Neal have also worked with these agencies and drawn attention to the "War on Carp."

McConnell visited western Kentucky in May to discuss options to address the Asian carp infestation that has damaged local ecosystems and threatened the tourism and fishing industries. He called reducing the Asian carp population a top priority for this year and next.

"Sen. Mitch McConnell went to bat for West Kentucky," said White, Lyon County's judge executive. "When I contacted Sen. McConnell about the Asian carp crisis, he took the time to recognize the problem and used his experience and a hands-on approach to bring solutions."

The recently enacted Interior Appropriations bill includes $11 million to help fight Asian carp in the Mississippi and Ohio River basins. The amount represents a $600,000 increase from last year's funding, McConnell's office said.

McConnell helped to secure $11 million in the recently enacted Interior Appropriations bill -- a $600,000 increase from the fiscal year 2018 level -- for efforts to combat Asian carp in the Mississippi and Ohio River basins.

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