note: The video below originally appeared on WTTW's "Chicago
Tonight" program in August of 2006. Most of the piece was shot
on August 22nd and 23rd of 2006 at an international Asian carp symposium
held in Peoria. This segment was one of four dealing with the Great
Lakes and environmental issues aired by "Chicago Tonight"
with funding from the Joyce
the turbulent (and somewhat turbid) waters of the mighty Illinois
River, the Curator
of these pages (Rich Samuels) brings you the troubling story of
the Asian silver and bighead carp. On WTTW's "Chicago
Tonight" program, Rich has specialized in invasive species
tales (from the Round Goby to the still little-understood Bloody
Canadian biologist Becky Cudmore holds aloft an Asian silver carp
that jumped into the boat. Jumping Asian carp are a common problem
in portions of the Illinois river.
Duane Chapman of the U.S. Geological Survey demonstrates how to
filet Asian carp. Chapman considers them good eating. Others have
suggested they might make better feed for zoo animals.
Orion Briney stumbles over the catch of the day. Briney fishes silver
and bighead carp commercially on the Illinois River. He sells his
catch to the Schafer
Fisheries of Fulton and Thomson, Illinois, whose principal markets
are Asian communities in the U.S.
A frontal view of an Asian bighead carp in the Schafer Firsheries
Thomson processing plant. These carp are prized in the Peoples Republic
of China as the primary ingredient of fishhead soup.