Amazingly strong, hungry and can survive on the ground. Northern snakeheads fish is seen as unstoppable plague in American waters and has pretty bad reputation.
For now, the fish have gone to the surface from Massachusetts to California, and from Manhattan’s Central Park to the streams of Arkansas The largest flock is in the area of Chesapeake Bay, and officials in Maryland and Virginia have tried in different ways to stop the fish from disrupting delicate ecological balance.
The danger from the snakeheads, for whom are believed to spawn at least 3 or 4 times during the year, compared to other species that do it once a year, comes also from the fact that they can expel more durable and more desirable species.
Snakehead fish originates from Yangtze river in China and they first caught attention of the American media in 2002. when a growing population was found in the Maryland Lake near Washington.
This species can also “walk” on land, wipe out domestic species and has no natural predators.
Lots of other fish originating from different continents have increased in numbers in U.S., but few can rival snakehead fish. They are known to grow up to 90 cm (the largest seen so far), their jaw is huge and full of sharp teeth. They can survive for days without water as they wrap up in the mucus they secret. They are considered a delicacy in Asia, but also increasingly among American chefs.
The population of the snakehead fish has increased since 2004. and phishing as appreciated regional sport brings $ 662 million a year in Virginia and includes more than 5,500 jobs in the country.
The reports of the “attack” of the snakehead fish to the lake Harlem in New York in April have promoted the warning from the state agency for environmental protection:”If you catch this fish, do not let it go. Kill it immediately, freeze and report your catch.”
Similar notice was placed on the official website of the natural resources of Maryland. They treat the snakehead fish differently than Virginia, which forbids commercial sale in order to avoid creating a market for this species. Maryland advocates selling noting that eating this fish gives other species a chance.