Canada’s Asian Carp Program will receive up to $20 million over five years due to a new government investment.
Announced by Karina Gould, Minister for Democratic Institutions and Member of Parliament for Burlington, on behalf of Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, the funding represents a significant commitment on behalf of the federal government in protecting the Great Lakes from Asian carps.
“I am pleased that Burlington is home to a state-of-the-art laboratory which has bolstered our efforts to fight the entry of Asian carps into the Great Lakes through research and innovation,” said Gould. “The Government of Canada remains committed to ensuring that we take all possible measures to protect our treasured Great Lakes.”
The investment will help Canada’s Asian Carp Program to continue prevention efforts through early warning surveillance, partnering, and outreach activities. This funding will allow Fisheries and Oceans Canada to expand the Asian Carp Program to increase protection of our Great Lakes and preserve Canada’s fisheries.
“Our Government is committed to protecting the health of Canada’s waterways, marine ecosystems, and our multi-billion dollar recreational and commercial fisheries from the threat of aquatic invasive species,” said LeBlanc. “I am pleased to announce this investment towards combatting aquatic invasive species that will both strengthen our Asian Carp Program and improve and protect the health of Canada’s freshwater resources for generations to come.”
Canada’s Asian Carp Program conducts early detection sampling for Asian carps at over 32 locations in the Canadian waters of the Great Lakes basin. All four species of Asian carps would have an extremely negative effect on the natural ecosystem because of their ability to outcompete for space and food and a lack of natural predators.
To date 25 Grass Carp have been caught in Canadian waters. Since the program began in 2012, there have been no captures of Bighead, Silver or Black carps in Canada.