Rybí restaurace Šupina a Šupinka, apartmány

Carp

Drawing © Radek Doško

  • Latin name: Cyprinus carpio
  • Slovak: Kapor obyčajný
  • English: Carp
  • German: Karpfen
  • sort: Cypriniformes
  • family: Cyprinidae
  • feed: omnivore
  • life span: 40 years
  • sexual maturity: 3rd to 5th year
  • reproduction: May - June
  • common size: 40-65 cm
  • maximum: 110cm
Common carp is one of the most plentiful and widespread fish in the world. Apart from the huge area of its original distribution stretching from the Danube basin to Japan, it has been stocked to many places worldwide.  It is a valuable production fish in some countries (Israel, Indonesia, some African countries) but it is considered a pest fish causing collapse of many indigenous ecosystems in others (Australia, U.S.A.).

Before the carp was spread worldwide, it had a reputation of an omnivorous quickly-growing species of quality meat and not suffering from handling and transport. Only few other species are similarly suitable for commercial fish farming and the carp farming has one of the longest traditions. It is a one-thousand-year tradition as the carp culture in China dates back to times BC; the Danube carp was grown by the Romans in Europe.

Carp farming has a very long tradition in our country, too, and the face of the countryside has been changed by thousands of carp ponds built in many places in Bohemia and Moravia.

The carp is indigenous to the tributaries of the Danube – mainly the Morava and Dyje rivers – in the Czech Republic.   It has been introduced to the other parts of our country and if it were not for the regular stocking, it would die out in most current habitats.

The original wild carp resides in warm flowing rivers and it is very different from the current high-backed bred strains grown in still-waters. Its low body resembles rather the grass carp, it has big golden scales, two pairs of barbells and large rounded fins. Nowadays, it is becoming rarer and cross breeding with bred carps that are stocked or have escaped from fish farms to rivers is most dangerous for the wild carp.

Bred carp strains differ in many features such as the height and size of the body, skin pigmentation, scales (mirror carp, the linear mirror, and leather carp) and the Japanese colourful carps known as “koi” carps.   Carp breeding is a continuous process which is taking place these days too.  Recently the original Czech strains have been cross-bred with e.g. Hungarian carps or Amur wild carp.

Cross-breeding is of high importance as the quality bred strains grow more rapidly, they are disease-resistant and their growing is much more economic. If carps are left unattended as it happened in Australia where they had been introduced, populations similar to the wild strain develop very quickly – small-bodied and slowly growing.

You can find more information at www.mrk.cz Section ‘Fish Encyclopaedia’.