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A tweak to state environmental law now makes it illegal statewide to import, possess and sell live bighead carp – one of three species of Asian Carp – in New York State, the state Department of Environmental Conservation reported.

In what’s become a continuing effort to keep Asian Carp from establishing populations in the Great Lakes, the DEC announced late last week the changes to the state regulations governing the invasive species.

The state’s regulations formerly prohibited possessing and selling fish species that DEC had determined to be “a present danger to indigenous fish populations, including snakehead fish and three species of Asian Carp” that included the bighead carp.

Until now, those prohibitions included an exception allowing bighead carp in the five boroughs of the City of New York and areas of Westchester County.

Recent federal action, however, banned any interstate transportation of live bighead carp, necessitating the DEC to repeal its regulation that provided for the limited sale of the fish for human consumption.

It’s feared that their introduction and proliferation could be catastrophic to the ecosystems.

email: tpignataro@buffnews.com