Fifteen-year old Seth Russell was floating down Lake Chicot in Arkansas on an inner tube being towed by a boat when a carp suddenly leaped out of the water and crashed into his face. The impact was severe enough to render the boy unconscious and break his jaw, but the experience must have even worse for the fish because Russell was covered in fish blood and guts after the accident.
The carp in question was a Silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix). This fish is not native to the United States; it originates from north and northeast Asia. During the 1970’s Silver carps were deliberately introduced to U.S. waters to control algae growth in aquacultures and municipal wastewater treatment facilities. Specimens soon began to escape into other bodies of water and Silver carps can today be found in the Mississippi, Illinois, Ohio and Missouri rivers and many of their tributaries.
This shows that invasive species doesn’t have to be a direct problem for animals and plants in the area only; some can actually cause direct harm to people as well. The Silver carp has earned the nick-name Flying carp for is propensity to leap from the water when frightened. It can leap 3 meters / 10 feet high in the air and is certainly not something you wish to crash into since it can attain a weight of 18 kg / 40 lbs.