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How To Control Asian Carp? Blast Them With Shotguns...Obviously

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February 22, 2012

How To Control Asian Carp? Blast Them With Shotguns...Obviously

By Chad Love

There have been many ideas brought forward about how to control the Asian carp, some serious, some not so much, but now an Illinois lawmaker has cranked up the carp-o-meter to eleven with a proposal to allow (I'm not making this up) the use of boat-based shotguns as a means of carp control.

From this story on huffpost:

As the Great Lakes region continues to look for ways to stop plankton-gobbling Asian Carp from infesting our lakes and rivers, the Illinois General Assembly is considering a rather unconventional approach to fighting the invasive species: shooting them. Last week, Illinois Rep. Dave Winters (R-Shirland) introduced a bill that would amend the Fish and Aquatic Life Code, allowing registered gun owners in the state to shoot Asian carp "with a shotgun off of a motorboat in the Illinois River beginning with the 2013 licensing year."

The bill says the Department of Natural Resources would be able to regulate and administer the pilot program. "Shotguns, jumping fish, and boats speeding along on bumpy water. What could go wrong?" Chicagoist wrote Friday, adding that Winters' bill is not the only strange solution to carp locals have come up with.

So, is this just one more goofy idea, or perhaps the next great wingshooting sport?

Comments (37)

Top Rated
All Comments
from A Wild Beast at... wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

It is potentially dangerous and could be really fun, but there will be questions:

A. Can we use low cost lead shot (since there a some many carp), and;
B. Where will al the dead fish pile up and stink?

I would rather have Illinois close the locks that could give the carp access to Lake Michigan.

Please, read my blog. Just google "A Wild Beast at Heart".

-5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mibasshunter wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Instead of "Hay Tom, lets go shoot some skeet." it could be "Hay Tom, lets go shoot some Asian carp!"

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from fezzant wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

There are already guys doing aerial bowfishing for asian carp. It looks like a blast - just do a search on youtube.

Seems like using shotguns, while certainly effective, would be likely to incur some significant collateral damage.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Wild beast no lead shot wouldn't be allowed besides you can now get #7 shot for slighlty more than lead. Finally they could use them as dog & cat food and also fertilizer. I think this would have a great economic and enviromental impact for all communities along the river. You must have a fishing license, buy the ammo, have guides, travel and stay, I see a real good idea here. Some say it's dangerous, well I say all hunting is dangerous with or without a gun. Let Illinois hunters and fishermen have some fun along with pumping some much need income into that crazy state.

+11 Good Comment? | | Report
from axemike777 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

This is a great idea! Steel shot only, lead is harmful to waterfowl and certain aquatic species. Let's curtail this invasive species and protect our native species!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Pamela Hunter wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

This might be a moot point. I was out in the Starved Rock area of the Illinois River, 19 February. According to the locals, "we don't have a problem here, but they do..." usually 20 miles down diver. The commercial fishermen have been pulling carp out of the river by the truck loads. There were no sightings of carp from Morris to Starved Rock. It was a warm day and along the river bank, the areas the carp would warm up in winter, nothing. I watched a freighter for 1/2 hour, no jumping fish. Enjoyed the casino. Went home with no fish.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Pamela, your comment is moot! Just because you were somewhere on a given day and the locals tell you "they" don't have a problem doesn't mean the problem isn't there. Just because where I live there are no bald eagles doesn't mean they're not there, they are I just have never seen them in my local area, but we have them in the surrounding areas. Maybe we both should look around a little closer.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from firedawg wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I have been saying how much fun it would be to blast them with a shotgun, from the first time I saw people shooting them with a bow. Man, I hope they pass this, because there is no possible way that it can't be fun.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Manbearpig wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

What about netting these things in large numbers and tossing out game fish(if possible). All the suggestions the "experts" throw out are, to put it mildly... stupid. Shooting them with guns? Really that the best they can come up with?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Peter Campbell wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

As an Illinois resident, I say BRING ON THE CARP!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from weedless97 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Steel only, and I'm in. Let's get 'em!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from bass bomber wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Just another reason for me to get a new shotgun.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Drover1 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

It sounds like fun, but I doubt it will happen. Too much risk of injury -- people shooting from moving boats at fast-moving targets. Also, it wouldn't make any measurable difference in carp populations. The only ways to significantly reduce their numbers are large-scale netting or poisoning.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jbell6826 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Where do I sign up? This will be a blast!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from sportsfreak224 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Well if they all shoot themselves at least we can finally shut the gates

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from sportsfreak224 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Well if they all shoot themselves at least we can finally shut the gates

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I am,year or two from graduating college would love to be on the ground floor of starting an asian carp cat food company, just need a business major partner lol. Seriously an industry would be the best way to thin the population we do it to fish in the ocean all the time. That or the last post on these things the guys with waterskis and implements of destruction (my favorite is "using an asian carp to beat other asian carp") by far my favorite way of riding these beasts from the water.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gtbigsky wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Of course you would have to use steel!! I agree that it would be very dangerous and very fun. I think that the only way to really get rid of these things is with a large scale netting operation. However, under water large scale netting would surely have collateral damage. Its not as simple as just throwing fish back! you could however use nets above the water. Being that the carp are the only jumping fish in these waters there would be no collateral damage. You could simply drag a small barge behind a boat that has a net more like a screen that would catch and let the carp slide into a reservoir. The fish would be able to be collected at the end of the day and disposed of properly. There would have to be a gap between boat and barge to allow the fish to hit the screen.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from rock rat wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Fliphunter14-I've eaten those fish in China, they taste good. We need a way to process them such that meat is separated from bone and processed into patties for McFish.

I"m sure that the SEAsians who live anywhere close to these fish have caught a lot of them for personal consumption. My biggest reservation would be how clean the water is. If there is too much pollution the fish can't be sold.

Someone will make a lot of money off these fish.

You have an unlimited supply of protein in a protein starved world.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from bassman06 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I think that this is a sound idea, if I had a means to travel from VA to Illinois, I'd probably do it, however, I think there should be regulations for the state to do this, as in, how many boats can be in a certain length of water, and what times they are allowed to be in that part of the river. Flip, as a fellow college student, I would gladly join you in that business!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from wischneider wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I think a better idea would be to find ways to increase the Hmong population in that area. They can have the ones from the Milwaukee area. Those guys fish a lake until it's empty and eat absolutely everything they catch...

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from pyroweber wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

if this actually happens, im going to go to illinois to do this!!! bowfishing is a blast, i shot trap competitively, mixing them would be uncontrollable fun.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from badsmerf wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Netting them is the only way to get rid of them. Use them for animal food and fish them completely out. This has to be possible. Its possible to completely fish out anything else, so it can be done. Need a way to make money though, like its been pointed out. People don't work for free.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from David Thegrizzly wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

i say bring in a thousand china men and see how many carp are left you would be shocked

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Weazel4 wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

That sounds like a ton of fun. I have got to try that. Shooting them with a bow is one thing, but a shotgun!!!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from mexhunter wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

it really does sound like fun, but like stated :"Shotguns, jumping fish, and boats speeding along on bumpy water. What could go wrong?" you could drop a 500$ gun in the water, if a carp jumped strait for you and your muzzle turns INTO the boat?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

Jeeze I said this would be a blast a long time ago!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matt Bach wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

Ok guys - this is ridiculous. Diehard fisherman here...and yes I understand the over population and invasiveness of the carp. However, lets think about this. People are going to get killed. There is no safe way to regulate this. In Illinois, these carp jump in the hundreds at once, therefore bullets would be all over the place. How about we just continue to have asian carp fishing tournaments, or go the other route and just shock the river as often as possible and net them out. SMH

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matt Bach wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

There is no safe way to get a shot off on a fish that jumps out of the water less than one second. This is a reflex shot. In that short time, you dont have the opportunity to consider anything else in the area of the shot. Think about it...when shooting deer for instance you have the opportunity to take a shot on a non-moving target which you see for an extended period of time. When shooting birds, you are shooting high. With this method, its quick shots even with other boats. Common sense people.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matt Bach wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

There is no safe way to get a shot off on a fish that jumps out of the water less than one second. This is a reflex shot. In that short time, you dont have the opportunity to consider anything else in the area of the shot. Think about it...when shooting deer for instance you have the opportunity to take a shot on a non-moving target which you see for an extended period of time. When shooting birds, you are shooting high. With this method, its quick shots even with other boats. Common sense people.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JakeT_little.Racks wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

It's an interesting idea, a dangerous one, but interesting.
I still don't believe it will help at all but it would make a lot of red necks out there VERY happy.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from adkmtnman wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

According to the National Wildlfe Federation professional conservationist/biologists:

•Hydrologic separation (phyical separating with dry land) of the Great Lakes and Mississippi River basins is the only permanent and sustainable method of preventing movement of aquatic invaders between the basins. NWF urges the Corps to limit research to strategies involving complete hydrologic separation;
•The Corps study will take a minimum of five years, which is far too slow for this crisis situation. NWF urges the Corps to produce results within 18 months;
•Forty percent of the area of Great Lakes is within Canada. NWF urges the Corps to hold public meetings in Canada to hear stakeholders concerns on the impact of a possible Asian carp invasion on shared international waters, and;

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matthew Dykstra wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

I think that a war against Asian Carp should include every tactic. Sportsman and Commercial and State and Federal commitment to eradicate this problem. I live in West Michigan and am very concerned about the impacts of this destructive invasive species will have. I have personally experienced the Zebra Mussels and Round Gobie invasions of the Great Lakes. As a child there we never caught Gobies off the piers in Lake Michigan. Now that is about all you will catch. I dont want a repeat of that.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ncarl wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

I think that sounds awsome. I would do it in a heartbeat.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Chris Lord wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

I would do it!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Patrick Goulding wrote 2 years 5 weeks ago

if they do that thats way cheaper than me getting a bow fishing rig on my bow so sign me up

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Redford wrote 2 years 3 weeks ago

I would travel to shoot a mess of carp. Non-toxic shot only of course!

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from Dcast wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Wild beast no lead shot wouldn't be allowed besides you can now get #7 shot for slighlty more than lead. Finally they could use them as dog & cat food and also fertilizer. I think this would have a great economic and enviromental impact for all communities along the river. You must have a fishing license, buy the ammo, have guides, travel and stay, I see a real good idea here. Some say it's dangerous, well I say all hunting is dangerous with or without a gun. Let Illinois hunters and fishermen have some fun along with pumping some much need income into that crazy state.

+11 Good Comment? | | Report
from Manbearpig wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

What about netting these things in large numbers and tossing out game fish(if possible). All the suggestions the "experts" throw out are, to put it mildly... stupid. Shooting them with guns? Really that the best they can come up with?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I am,year or two from graduating college would love to be on the ground floor of starting an asian carp cat food company, just need a business major partner lol. Seriously an industry would be the best way to thin the population we do it to fish in the ocean all the time. That or the last post on these things the guys with waterskis and implements of destruction (my favorite is "using an asian carp to beat other asian carp") by far my favorite way of riding these beasts from the water.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from adkmtnman wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

According to the National Wildlfe Federation professional conservationist/biologists:

•Hydrologic separation (phyical separating with dry land) of the Great Lakes and Mississippi River basins is the only permanent and sustainable method of preventing movement of aquatic invaders between the basins. NWF urges the Corps to limit research to strategies involving complete hydrologic separation;
•The Corps study will take a minimum of five years, which is far too slow for this crisis situation. NWF urges the Corps to produce results within 18 months;
•Forty percent of the area of Great Lakes is within Canada. NWF urges the Corps to hold public meetings in Canada to hear stakeholders concerns on the impact of a possible Asian carp invasion on shared international waters, and;

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from mexhunter wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

it really does sound like fun, but like stated :"Shotguns, jumping fish, and boats speeding along on bumpy water. What could go wrong?" you could drop a 500$ gun in the water, if a carp jumped strait for you and your muzzle turns INTO the boat?

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from weedless97 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Steel only, and I'm in. Let's get 'em!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Drover1 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

It sounds like fun, but I doubt it will happen. Too much risk of injury -- people shooting from moving boats at fast-moving targets. Also, it wouldn't make any measurable difference in carp populations. The only ways to significantly reduce their numbers are large-scale netting or poisoning.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from fezzant wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

There are already guys doing aerial bowfishing for asian carp. It looks like a blast - just do a search on youtube.

Seems like using shotguns, while certainly effective, would be likely to incur some significant collateral damage.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Mibasshunter wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Instead of "Hay Tom, lets go shoot some skeet." it could be "Hay Tom, lets go shoot some Asian carp!"

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from sportsfreak224 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Well if they all shoot themselves at least we can finally shut the gates

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from sportsfreak224 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Well if they all shoot themselves at least we can finally shut the gates

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matt Bach wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

There is no safe way to get a shot off on a fish that jumps out of the water less than one second. This is a reflex shot. In that short time, you dont have the opportunity to consider anything else in the area of the shot. Think about it...when shooting deer for instance you have the opportunity to take a shot on a non-moving target which you see for an extended period of time. When shooting birds, you are shooting high. With this method, its quick shots even with other boats. Common sense people.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

Jeeze I said this would be a blast a long time ago!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Peter Campbell wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

As an Illinois resident, I say BRING ON THE CARP!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Dcast wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Pamela, your comment is moot! Just because you were somewhere on a given day and the locals tell you "they" don't have a problem doesn't mean the problem isn't there. Just because where I live there are no bald eagles doesn't mean they're not there, they are I just have never seen them in my local area, but we have them in the surrounding areas. Maybe we both should look around a little closer.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Gtbigsky wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Of course you would have to use steel!! I agree that it would be very dangerous and very fun. I think that the only way to really get rid of these things is with a large scale netting operation. However, under water large scale netting would surely have collateral damage. Its not as simple as just throwing fish back! you could however use nets above the water. Being that the carp are the only jumping fish in these waters there would be no collateral damage. You could simply drag a small barge behind a boat that has a net more like a screen that would catch and let the carp slide into a reservoir. The fish would be able to be collected at the end of the day and disposed of properly. There would have to be a gap between boat and barge to allow the fish to hit the screen.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from rock rat wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Fliphunter14-I've eaten those fish in China, they taste good. We need a way to process them such that meat is separated from bone and processed into patties for McFish.

I"m sure that the SEAsians who live anywhere close to these fish have caught a lot of them for personal consumption. My biggest reservation would be how clean the water is. If there is too much pollution the fish can't be sold.

Someone will make a lot of money off these fish.

You have an unlimited supply of protein in a protein starved world.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from pyroweber wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

if this actually happens, im going to go to illinois to do this!!! bowfishing is a blast, i shot trap competitively, mixing them would be uncontrollable fun.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from firedawg wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I have been saying how much fun it would be to blast them with a shotgun, from the first time I saw people shooting them with a bow. Man, I hope they pass this, because there is no possible way that it can't be fun.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matthew Dykstra wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

I think that a war against Asian Carp should include every tactic. Sportsman and Commercial and State and Federal commitment to eradicate this problem. I live in West Michigan and am very concerned about the impacts of this destructive invasive species will have. I have personally experienced the Zebra Mussels and Round Gobie invasions of the Great Lakes. As a child there we never caught Gobies off the piers in Lake Michigan. Now that is about all you will catch. I dont want a repeat of that.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from bass bomber wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Just another reason for me to get a new shotgun.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from badsmerf wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Netting them is the only way to get rid of them. Use them for animal food and fish them completely out. This has to be possible. Its possible to completely fish out anything else, so it can be done. Need a way to make money though, like its been pointed out. People don't work for free.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from jbell6826 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

Where do I sign up? This will be a blast!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Chris Lord wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

I would do it!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from JakeT_little.Racks wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

It's an interesting idea, a dangerous one, but interesting.
I still don't believe it will help at all but it would make a lot of red necks out there VERY happy.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Redford wrote 2 years 3 weeks ago

I would travel to shoot a mess of carp. Non-toxic shot only of course!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from bassman06 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I think that this is a sound idea, if I had a means to travel from VA to Illinois, I'd probably do it, however, I think there should be regulations for the state to do this, as in, how many boats can be in a certain length of water, and what times they are allowed to be in that part of the river. Flip, as a fellow college student, I would gladly join you in that business!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from David Thegrizzly wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

i say bring in a thousand china men and see how many carp are left you would be shocked

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from wischneider wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

I think a better idea would be to find ways to increase the Hmong population in that area. They can have the ones from the Milwaukee area. Those guys fish a lake until it's empty and eat absolutely everything they catch...

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from axemike777 wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

This is a great idea! Steel shot only, lead is harmful to waterfowl and certain aquatic species. Let's curtail this invasive species and protect our native species!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Weazel4 wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

That sounds like a ton of fun. I have got to try that. Shooting them with a bow is one thing, but a shotgun!!!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matt Bach wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

Ok guys - this is ridiculous. Diehard fisherman here...and yes I understand the over population and invasiveness of the carp. However, lets think about this. People are going to get killed. There is no safe way to regulate this. In Illinois, these carp jump in the hundreds at once, therefore bullets would be all over the place. How about we just continue to have asian carp fishing tournaments, or go the other route and just shock the river as often as possible and net them out. SMH

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ncarl wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

I think that sounds awsome. I would do it in a heartbeat.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Patrick Goulding wrote 2 years 5 weeks ago

if they do that thats way cheaper than me getting a bow fishing rig on my bow so sign me up

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Pamela Hunter wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

This might be a moot point. I was out in the Starved Rock area of the Illinois River, 19 February. According to the locals, "we don't have a problem here, but they do..." usually 20 miles down diver. The commercial fishermen have been pulling carp out of the river by the truck loads. There were no sightings of carp from Morris to Starved Rock. It was a warm day and along the river bank, the areas the carp would warm up in winter, nothing. I watched a freighter for 1/2 hour, no jumping fish. Enjoyed the casino. Went home with no fish.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Matt Bach wrote 2 years 7 weeks ago

There is no safe way to get a shot off on a fish that jumps out of the water less than one second. This is a reflex shot. In that short time, you dont have the opportunity to consider anything else in the area of the shot. Think about it...when shooting deer for instance you have the opportunity to take a shot on a non-moving target which you see for an extended period of time. When shooting birds, you are shooting high. With this method, its quick shots even with other boats. Common sense people.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from A Wild Beast at... wrote 2 years 8 weeks ago

It is potentially dangerous and could be really fun, but there will be questions:

A. Can we use low cost lead shot (since there a some many carp), and;
B. Where will al the dead fish pile up and stink?

I would rather have Illinois close the locks that could give the carp access to Lake Michigan.

Please, read my blog. Just google "A Wild Beast at Heart".

-5 Good Comment? | | Report

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