- Associated Press - Monday, May 23, 2016

YANKTON, S.D. (AP) - The amount of unwanted Asian carp that anglers are dumping along the Missouri River in the Yankton area has increased in recent years, leading to problems, state and federal officials say.

Dumping dead fish technically is considered littering, which is against the law, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Natural Resource Manager Gary Ledbetter told the Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan newspaper (https://bit.ly/20qaV3l ). The piles of rotting fish also lead to odor problems.

“In small doses this wouldn’t be a problem, but with the increase in fish being dropped and the weather getting warmer, you can bet it will be a problem later on,” he said.

Asian carp is considered an invasive species, and anglers probably think they’re doing the right thing by removing them from the water, South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Conservation Officer Dan Altman said.

“In the grand scheme of things, I think the people doing this think they are helping,” Altman said. But he noted that, “whether they pull out and kill 10 or 100 Asian carp, it is still only a drop in the hat compared to how much are still in the river.”

Anglers should properly dispose of the fish rather than just dump them on the ground, Ledbetter said.

“We want to educate people to the fact that this is littering, and that we will be doing our best to teach them as to why they shouldn’t doing this,” he said.

One misconception that people have is that Asian carp are inedible, according to Altman. It is the native carp that do not taste good when cooked, he said.

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Information from: Yankton Press and Dakotan, https://www.yankton.net/

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