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Monday, August 22, 2016

Common Carp

Photo Credit: Type 17
The common carp is a large omnivorous fish. They have large scales, a long dorsal fin base, and two pairs of long barbels (whiskers) in its upper jaw. Native to Europe and Asia, it was intentionally introduced into Midwest waters as a game fish in the 1880s. They live in lakes, rivers, and wetlands and are often seen in spring when they spawn in shallow waters.

They feed on aquatic crustaceans, insects, worms, aquatic plants, algae and seeds.

In temperate waters, spawning take place during the summer in patches of weeds. A number of males pursue spawning females in the race to fertilize the eggs as they are shed into the water. The sticky yellowish colored eggs attach to vegetation, and are not guarded by the parents. A typical female can lay over a million eggs in one breeding season.

Did you know?
Besides fish eggs, carp eat algae, other water plants, insects, earthworms, aquatic worms, snails, mussels, crayfish, and rotifers. They also eat old dead plant parts from the bottom.

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