. Organizers say that tournament is open to everyone as long as they bring their own equipment, and the winner will be decided by the final weight of total fish caught.
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Few invasive species get as much attention as Asian carp, and the city of Peoria, Illinois is likely to draw more with the announcement of its first annual carp bowfishing contest. Sponsored by a number of partners like Bass Pro Shops, the Flying Fish Festival and Bowfishing Tournament is slated to take place in July.
“This festival is about preservation and conservation on the Illinois River,” Union Sportsmen’s Alliance spokesperson Mike Everett told the Journal Star. ”It’s also about a boatload of fun as we try to put a serious dent in the number of flying fish over a 50-mile area of the river.”
The river Everett mentions is the Illinois, a principal tributary of the Mississippi River. When the Mississippi became populated with Asian carp in the early 1970s, it did not take long for the fish to reach the Illinois. A 2012 study by the Southern Illinois University found that more than 60 percent of all fish in the River were Asian carp. At the time, researchers recommended fishing and eating the carp in order to slow their growth.