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Grass Carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella)

The Grass Carp or Ctenopharyngodon idella originates in Eastern Asia, but has since been introduced to The United States and Europe. These freshwater fish get their name from the fact that they can eat large quantities of underwater weeds. For this reason they are often used to control weed problems in lakes and small ponds. You can check out the Grass Carp underwater in the video below...

In The United States this fish is referred to as the White Amur where it has been introduced in many different climates. They have long bodies that are thicker than most with a dark olive coloration and a white underbelly. These fish grow very quickly almost doubling in size in just a few months when they are young! As they mature they can reach lengths of about 4' (1.2m) maximum and weight 40lbs (18kg). Considering the fact that they can only live just over 10 years, you can certainly get an idea of just how quickly these Grass Carp grow! They have impressive metabolisms that allow them to consume multiple times their body weight in just a single day! Unlike its close relative the Common Carp, Grass Carp do not have any barbels on their mouths. Grass Carps are easy to reproduce and because of their high tolerance to poor water conditions and a great variation in temperatures they are considered to be an invasive species. With their populations kept in check though they are still used in many places to control the grow of underwater vegetation. In many places in the world they are also used for food and considered to be a favorite in China.

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