Wildlife agency says silver carp reported in East Tennessee

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(Courtesy: Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency)

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has received a report of invasive silver carp spotted in Chickamauga Lake.

An angler told the agency a silver carp jumped into his boat as he deployed a trolling motor, according to a news release from the agency. The man said he saw another 15-20 fish near the surface.

Silver carp are one of several species of invasive Asian carp that are a concern for wildlife officials. The fish in Chickamauga Lake were spotted in October, but the report was only made Friday, according to the agency. TWRA has received no additional reports of silver carp on the lake but is asking the public to keep an eye out.

“This is an excellent reminder to report carp sightings from East Tennessee, where carp are not already known to be established,” said TWRA Aquatic Nuisance Species Coordinator Cole Harty. “We encourage anyone reporting to include photos, location information, and if possible keep a fish frozen to share with TWRA.”

Wildlife officials think the invasive carp likely traveled up the Tennessee River through navigation locks to Chickamauga Lake.

“TWRA has been working with multiple partners to limit the spread and impact of invasive Asian carp in Tennessee,” said TWRA Fisheries Chief Frank Fiss. “This new observation demonstrates the urgency of the issue.”

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