By JOHN FLESHER
AP Environmental Writer
TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Federal officials say the despised Asian carp may have breached an electronic barrier designed to prevent it from invading the Great Lakes and jeopardizing their $7 billion sport fishery.
Officials with the Army Corps of Engineer say Friday that DNA of the giant carp have been found north of the barrier in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal.
If correct, that would mean the carp might reach Lake Michigan if they get through a navigational lock. From there, they could spread throughout the Great Lakes and out-compete native species for food.
Asian carp escaped from Southern fish farms in the 1990s and have been migrating up the Mississippi and Illinois rivers. They can exceed 4 feet in length and 100 pounds.