Grass Carp and Custom Barriers

Grass Carp

Grass Carp have proven to be effective in controlling aggressive aquatic weed growth when combined with an herbicide treatment maintenance program. It is a perfect match because the fish are inexpensive and they have a huge appetite for problem plants.

They were introduced into Florida’s waterways in 1972. These silvery green fish can live 10-12 years and on average grow to 15-20 pounds and up to 35 inches long. The bigger they get the more they can eat. In large lakes where food is everywhere they can get up to 50 pounds. We only use State authorized Triploid Grass Carp because they are infertile.

Some of their favorite foods are hydrilla, muskgrass, pondweed, coontail, naiad, elodea, duckweed and slender spikerush. Plants that they don’t like are water hyacinth, water lettuce, water lilies, torpedo grass and cattails.

Carp eat year round but at a slower rate in the winter when the water is colder and food isn’t as abundant. They eat more as the waters warm up and consume the most when the temperatures are between 70 and 90 degrees F.

Our expert staff can size up your waterway and determine the right aquatic herbicide approach and get treatments started while we wait on the proper permit to be acquired, which can take a few weeks.

Permitting Made Easy

We work closely with our clients to obtain the proper permit through Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Because we are very familiar with permitting, we know what the State requires and take steps to speed up the process.

Part of the permitting process is to inspect the waterway(s). Our staff will do a site inspection to determine the number of fish that will be needed to control underwater vegetation. We will also be looking for any potential outflow areas where the carp could escape and a barrier(s) will need to be built and installed.

Retention Pond Cleanup

We custom build our own carp barriers to fit any escape route that the fish may find. The barriers are built and properly installed. Pictures of the waterway and barrier(s) are taken and sent with the permit application so the State will know we have met their requirement for installing grass carp. The State will then inspect the waterway and barrier and issue a permit.

Once a permit is approved the fish are ordered from a State approved fish farm. Depending on fish availability, we will stock your waterway and let them do what they do best….eat.

Hand Removal and Cutting

Our staff is well trained in using the tools needed for this type of removal. We use different tools for different plants within a wetland, like machetes, rakes, chain saws, hedge trimmers and reciprocators.

Hand cutting is less labor than hand pulling because the roots are not removed. The immediate removal at a minimal cost is an advantage for many clients. It usually lasts one growing season but eventually they will return.

Raking and removal

Raking the surface of waterways to remove unwanted vegetation mats isn’t as fun as raking leaves in your yard. That is why our clients are thankful that we offer this service which we call R and R for raking.

Ponds often get spikerush, hydrilla and eel grass mats that form on the surface and are quite unsightly. Algae can form on top of the mat to create an even larger mat.

We will bring in an R and R team who are trained to wade in and rake out the mats. These teams haul the mats ashore, put them in our trucks and dispose of them properly off site.

The end result is a mat free waterway. After the initial R and R visit this needs to be followed up with regular maintenance to keep your waterway under control.

With a little R and R from Aquatic Weed Control, everyone is at ease.

After any removal, there is often a planting to introduce native plants back into the area. However, if not, we recommend a maintenance program to keep the area clear of unwanted vegetation. See the website tab for Wetland and Littorial Maintenance Program for more information.

We also excel at removing large trees and heavily invaded areas that require piece of heavy equipment to do the job. See the Mechanical Removals tab for more information.