Murray State Theses and Dissertations


The introduction of exotic fishes in freshwater environments has caused significant ecological and economic changes. Silver Carp Hypophthalmichthys molitrix are an invasive species in the United States but are native to large rivers in eastern Asia. This species is expanding its range throughout the Mississippi River basin, beginning with the Cumberland River and Tennessee River drainages. Although Silver Carp movement patterns have been studied in other portions of the Cumberland River and Tennessee River, the lowermost portion of both rivers below Lake Barkley Dam and Kentucky Lake Dam is a unique environment in which the movement of Silver Carp has not yet been closely studied. Understanding the movement patterns of Silver Carp along with native planktivores in the lower part of these rivers is important for understanding the factors that influence fish dam crossing and migrations. I used acoustic tags to track multiple fish species in the lower Cumberland River and lower Tennessee River. Contrary to my expectations, Silver Carp were found more often near the mouth of each river instead of near the dam. The movement of fish was influenced mostly by discharge and water temperature, but fish response to these parameters was complex. These results can be used to assist barrier operation and management to prevent Silver Carp from passing into Lake Barkley and Kentucky Lake.

Year manuscript completed


Year degree awarded


Author's Keywords

Silver Carp, Telemetry, Invasive Species, Kentucky Lake, Lake Barkley

Thesis Advisor

Dr. Timothy Spier

Committee Member

Dr. Michael Flinn

Committee Member

Dr. Jessica Moon

Committee Member

Joshua Tompkins

Document Type