For the first time ever, data estimating of carp biomass across Australia has been released.
As part of the Carp Biomass Project, fish survey data from more than 150 studies and 4831 sites, collected across 24 years have been collated, to give the estimate overall, and broken down to individual regions.
Having an accurate estimation of carp numbers will be beneficial when planning approaches to control the pest in waterways.
Biomass estimates represent a single point in time, with the values varying significantly between seasons, depending on conditions.
This work has provided us with a key understanding of how this highly adaptable pest can respond to different environmental conditions.
In a wet year, such as May 2011, the carp biomass estimate was 368,357 tonnes, with a lower and upper limit of 184,234 and 705,630 tonnes, respectively.
But modelling suggests carp biomass could surge to a maximum of 1,200,000 tonnes after three consecutive flood years.
Project leader Jarod Lyon said the research outcome would be a valuable planning tool, and provided further insight into the pest.
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"This work has provided us with a key understanding of how this highly adaptable pest can respond to different environmental conditions," he said.
A map of carp estimation in aquatic environments was created as part of the research, which will be a helpful planning tool for managers, as sites where carp biomass is high enough to cause significant environmental damage are now able to be identified.
In turn, carp management resources will be allocated where they are most needed.
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