Invasive Carp Outcompetes Kayaker for Missouri River Habitat

Invasive Carp Outcompetes Kayaker for Missouri River Habitat

Invasive Carp Outcompetes Kayaker for Missouri River Habitat

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Aug. 26 2010 1:18 PM

Invasive Carp Outcompetes Kayaker for Missouri River Habitat

A contestant in a 340-mile kayak race was forced to drop out yesterday after being hit in the head by a leaping silver carp, the Associated Press reported.

Houston resident Brad Pennington was considered one of the favorites among men's solo racers in the Missouri River 340, a canoe and kayak race that began Tuesday morning in Kansas City, Kan. At least until a 30-pound Asian silver carp jumped from the water and hit him in the head. The fish are known to panic and jump in response to passing vessels.

"It felt like a brick hit me," Pennington said Wednesday.

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The silver carp is one of the escaped domesticated carp species, lumped together under the name "Asian carp," that have flourished in the Mississippi River basin. Earlier this week, a U.S. District Court judge agreed to hold a hearing in September to decide whether or not to issue an emergency injunction closing Chicago's shipping canals, in the hopes blocking the carp from reaching the Great Lakes.