IL: Bowfishing tourney produces record carp

Springfield – A new state-record bighead Asian carp was among
nearly 12,000 fish taken by participants in the Bowfishing
Association of Illinois’ second-annual Director’s Shoot on the
Illinois River near Starved Rock State Park on July 16-17.

The new record for bighead carp taken by bow – a 59-pound, 4-ounce
fish – was brought in by Robb Kemper of the Team Fish Slayer
bowfishing team of Iowa during the tournament. The previous
bowfishing record for bighead carp in Illinois was 43 pounds, 5.6
ounces set last year on the Des Plaines River in Will County.

In all during the weekend tournament, participants took 48,000
pounds of invasive fish from the Illinois River during an
eight-hour period.

“Congratulations to all the participants and the Bowfishing
Association of Illinois for highlighting an exciting and fun way to
catch fish – while also highlighting the importance of removing
invasive Asian carp from our waterways,” said DNR Director Marc
Miller, who participated in the tournament. “Recreational anglers
can be of tremendous help in our efforts to haul Asian carp out of
the Illinois River system to keep these dangerous fish from
migrating into the Great Lakes.”

The Bowfishing Association of Illinois Director’s Shoot targeting
Asian carp included a day shoot on July 16 and a night shoot from 8
p.m. until 8 a.m. on July 16-17.

“Bowfishing is a great way to enjoy the outdoors. Many of the fish
we can harvest by bow are quite tasty, gar, silver, bighead and
grass carp as well as the sucker species. Any invasive fish such as
the Asian and common carps that are removed by bowfishing is a big
plus for our waters as well,” BAI Club President Ed Devries
said.

Participating teams were able to weigh-in their 30 top fish taken
by bow, with prizes awarded to the heaviest mess of fish.

Awards were also presented in an invasive fish format in which
teams competed for the most Asian carp and common carp taken by
bow. The winning team in the numbers division, Team Innerloc, from
Iowa, took 2,932 Asian carp and common carp from the river. The
second-place team removed 1,937 invasive fish from the river and
the third-place team removed 1,435 fish. In all, the 54 teams
removed approximately 12,000 fish – or about 24 tons of fish – from
the Illinois River.

Next year’s Bowfishing Association of Illinois Director’s Shoot is
scheduled for July 21-22, 2012. For more information, call (630)
886-1672 or visit www.illinoisbowfishing.net

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