Two year classes of grass carp and F, hybrids resulting from bighead carp male x grass carp female were compared at various stocking densities for aquatic plant control. One and two year old grass carp exhibited higher survival rates and better growth rates than the same age hybrid grass carp. The presence of grass carp or hybrid grass carp decreased both Secchi disc transparencies and dissolved oxygen values. Grass carp had a greater negative effect upon these measurements because they removed the vegetation quicker than the hybrid grass carp. These apparent detrimental effects on water quality are necessary trade-offs for vegetation removal by any method. Grass carp and hybrid grass carp utilized Chara sp., Potamogeton pectinatus, Hydrodicton sp., Rhizoclonia sp., and Pithophora sp. Two year old hybrid grass carp required approximately twice as much time as the same age grass carp to eliminate dense growths of the vegetation listed above. One year old hybrid grass carp were slightly less effective than one year old grass carp at controlling these same plant species. However, it was extremely difficult for one or two year old hybrid grass carp to totally eliminate dense growths of these plant species except at high stocking densities. The use of mean vegetation heights to indirectly measure total plant biomass was unacceptable whenever unpreferred floating plant species were present. The hybrid grass carp appeared to be a poor alternative biological control for nuisance aquatic vegetation when compared directly to the grass carp.
Freeze, Mike and Henderson, Scott
"Comparison of Two Year Classes of Hybrid Grass Carp and Grass Carp for Aquatic Plant Control,"
Journal of the Arkansas Academy of Science: Vol. 37
, Article 8.
Available at: http://scholarworks.uark.edu/jaas/vol37/iss1/8