Grass carp help fight weeds

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Scientists have released a further 1000 sterile Grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella), into Lake Austin, in an effort to tackle the invasive aquatic plant Hydrilla.

The weed, which can grow 10-15cm/4-6" per day, has covered massive areas of the Lake. The weed is clogging irrigation and power stations, and is causing problems for people using the Lake for recreation.

Grass carp, which are naturally herbivorous, and can reach up to a metre in length, prefer eating the Hydrilla to the native plants of the Lake, so they have been added in large quantities as a biocontrol. The latest addition of 1000 fish brings the total stock to 4800.

A survey of the Hydrilla population in three months time should reveal whether the introduction has been a success.