Evaluation of macrophyte control in 38 Florida lakes using triploid grass carp

Hanlon, Sandra G. and Hoyer, Mark V. and Cichra, Charles E. and Canfield, Daniel E. (2000) Evaluation of macrophyte control in 38 Florida lakes using triploid grass carp. Journal of Aquatic Plant Management, 38, pp. 48-54.

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Florida’s large number of shallow lakes, warm climate and long growing season have contributed to the development of excessive growths of aquatic macrophytes that have seriously interfered with many water use activities. The introduction of exotic aquatic macrophyte species such as hydrilla ( Hydrilla verticillata ) have added significantly to aquatic plant problems in Florida lakes. The use of grass carp ( Ctenopharyngodon idella ) can be an effective and economical control for aquatic vegetation such as hydrilla. Early stocking rates (24 to 74 grass carp per hectare of lake area) resulted in grass carp consumption rates that vastly exceeded the growth rates of the aquatic plants and often resulted in the total loss of all submersed vegetation. This study looked at 38 Florida lakes that had been stocked with grass carp for 3 to 10 years with stocking rates ranging from < 1 to 59 grass carp per hectare of lake and 1 to 207 grass carp per hectare of vegetation to determine the long term effects of grass carp on aquatic macrophyte communities. The median PAC (percent area coverage) value of aquatic macrophytes for the study lakes after they were stocked with grass carp was 14% and the median PVI (percent volume infested) value of aquatic macrophytes was 2%. Only lakes stocked with less than 25 to 30 fish per hectare of vegetation tended to have higher than median PAC and PVI values. When grass carp are stocked at levels of > 25 to 30 fish per hectare of vegetation the complete control of aquatic vegetation can be achieved, with the exception of a few species of plants that grass carp have extreme difficulty consuming. If the management goal for a lake is to control some of the problem aquatic plants while maintaining a small population of predominately unpalatable aquatic plants, grass carp can be stocked at approximately 25 to 30 fish per hectare of vegetation.

Item Type: Article
Title: Evaluation of macrophyte control in 38 Florida lakes using triploid grass carp
Personal Creator/Author:
Hanlon, Sandra G.
Hoyer, Mark V.
Cichra, Charles E.
Canfield, Daniel E.
Refereed: Yes
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Aquatic Plant Management
Volume: 38
Page Range: pp. 48-54
Date: 2000
Issuing Agency: Aquatic Plant Management Society, Inc.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Ctenopharyngodon idella, biological control, aquatic plant control, lake management, grass carp; Florida
Subjects: Management
Item ID: 1838
Depositing User: Stephanie Haas
Date Deposited: 14 Feb 2009 15:55
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2011 20:00
URI: http://aquaticcommons.org/id/eprint/1838

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