Monday, April 07, 2003

Probably a Bad Idea... It seems that Lake Austin in Texas is suffering from an infestation of Hydrilla, a non-native plant species that got introduced into Florida waterways many years ago and has been spreading around the country ever since. The weed grows very quickly, can regenerate itself even from a tiny piece of stem, and sends up long, wispy tentacles that clog boat motors and are generally unattractive. Now the good people in Texas are introducing another non-native species, the grass-eating carp, into their lake. These fish can grow up to 400 pounds and are completely vegetarian. The hope is that they will keep the Hydrilla population under control.

Critics point out that the carp eat all sorts of vegetation, and will quickly pick the lake clean of all vegetation. This will cause irreparable harm to other fish species, especially the bass population that makes the lake such a popular fishing spot. Supporters, so disgusted with the pernicious effect of Hydrilla respond, basically, "Fuck the bass!" The details are available from The New York Times here.

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