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Water Lover
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Discussions of how to stop Asian carp from invading the Great Lakes seem to have gotten some authorities to think about separating the Great Lakes and Mississippi basins at the Illinois River.

Could this threaten the Great Loop tour around the eastern US?

Would it perhaps be an alternative for smaller boats to portage from Lake Erie down to the Ohio River system or could the portage be improved somehow to be feasible for somewhat larger vessels?

Here's what was on a local news station:

Gov. Quinn open to Great Lakes-Mississippi split | KOB.com

"Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn said Saturday that separating the Great Lakes and Mississippi River systems is the "ultimate solution" to prevent voracious Asian carp from overrunning the lakes, a potential step toward resolving a longstanding regional feud."
 

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Asian carp are a real nuisance and every effort possible should be made to avoid their migration into the Great Lakes basin. Separating the two basins should be done ASAP and then look for alternate solutions.

It will threaten the Great Loop but that's a small price to pay compared to the devastating effects of Asian carp making it into the Great Lakes.

One solution for looper size boats is a marine railway like the one at Big Chute on the Trent-Severn waterway that was built so that lamprey eels would not get into the cottage country lakes and rivers.
 

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Maybe the states bordered by the rivers infested by the Carp should put a bounty on them. Like $10 to $20 per hundred weight of A. Carp caught. That will help some.
 

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Sea Sprite 23 #110 (20)
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they talk about using electric nets to keep them out.. why not electrifing the locks to shock/kill anything in the water before allowing any water into lakes?
 

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We must remember that Asian Carp was introduced in U.S. waters by... humans. Yes, we should make efforts to stop them from migrating further. I have read that they are commercially valuable in Asia... but it seems not lucrative enough in our economy to exploit this, even when they are perhaps the easiest fish to catch. I also believe that, all efforts aside, some idiot somewhere will deliberately introduce them in the Great Lakes. Lion Fish in the Caribbean = "pet" owners in Florida "discarding them" in the waters. Same with reptiles and the like... the list goes on, and the cost to "protect" the environment will just increase until we cannot keep up and "greater priorities" are demanding funds.
 

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Since the Chicago canal/river combination is primarily useful to pleasure boats, it may be of interest to duplicate the Big Chute railway on the Trent-Severn canal in Canada (which all Great Loopers are familiar with). It would literally lift the boats out of the lake and deposit them in the river at a relatively low cost... and create a tourist attraction in downtown Chicago to boot!
 
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