Common Carp

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERAThis species, dwelling in freshwater basins of the Mediterranean, Black, Azov, Caspian and AralSeas, the Issyk-Kul, and rivers of the Pacific – from the Amur in the north to Burma south, is rare in the Pskov-PeipsiLake.

The carp prefers quiet and still waters, sticking to the reaches with sluggish waters and plant thickets in rivers, settling in lakes and adapting well in ponds. It grows fast, with the rate of growth depending on foraging conditions, and primarily on the abundance of fodder and length of periods with water temperature above 20°С. The fish forages most intensively in waters of 25-29°С and stops feeding below 8-10°С. In favorable conditions, by the end of the second year it may reach up to 30 cm and 500-600 gr. Its maximal length is over 100 cm and weight over 20 kg.

The common carp matures in its 4-6th year, with males maturing earlier and being lighter than females. Its fertility is high, with large females laying 0.6-1.5 million eggs. Spawning takes place in spring, with water temperature at least 13-15°С. Spawning is mist intensive at 18-20°С and above. The fish spawns in the strand line, in thickets of soft aquatic vegetation or in flooded meadows.

The diet of adults is diverse. In lakes and reservoirs it is dominated by larvae, tendipedid, mollusks, as well as vegetation, seeds of aquatic or even terraneous plants occurring in water by accident.

The carp winters in deep holes in estuaries or pre-delta stretches. In lakes and rivers it winters in the deepest parts of the water body. The common carp is commercially valuable.

In contrast to other species, pond carps are undemanding as regards the oxygen content in water and easily lives through short drops in it. It is almost omnivorous, and forages well on the natural and artificial fodder of vegetative origin.

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