Residents in Nantou County’s Yuchi Township (魚池) are calling on the county government to eradicate giant snakehead fish from Sun Moon Lake (日月潭) while they are still juveniles, as their population is set to explode this year.
The giant snakehead, or Channa micropeltes, is a carnivorous fish that can grow longer than 1.3m and weigh up to 24kg.
It is the most aggressive in the snakehead family, often swarming to prey on other fish, crustaceans, amphibians, small reptiles and even small birds and mammals.
Photo: Hsieh Chieh-yu, Taipei Times
Their numbers have grown rapidly since being introduced to Sun Moon Lake, threatening many indigenous species of fish and shrimp, and are expected to reach as many as 2,000 this year.
As opposed to the gray-black appearance of mature members of the species, juveniles are bright red-orange and clump together in large balls that float near the surface of the water.
The Nantou County Bureau of Agricultural Affairs last year cooperated with National Tsing Hua University on using electrofishing to catch the “fish balls.”
After being informed by fishers about juveniles appearing on the lake, the bureau on Saturday said that it sent personnel to round them up using the same method.
They were not as successful as last year, likely due to increased vigilance by the adults, it said.
They are hiding in deeper waters with more cover from aquatic plants and fallen branches, making it difficult for boats to approach and use electrofishing methods to nab them, it said.
The bureau said that it has asked fishers to wait until the fish move to more open waters.
Many people keep juvenile giant snakeheads due to their color, but release them into the wild after they become adults, where they become the “ecological assassins” of Sun Moon Lake, the bureau said, urging people not to release pets into the wild, regardless of the species.
A video allegedly featuring retired general Kao An-kuo (高安國) calling on Taiwanese military officers to surrender to China and overthrow the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) government has sparked outrage and calls for him to be charged with treason. The video, titled “A message to Taiwanese military officers,” allegedly shows Kao saying: “I call on commanding officers of our military troops to stand up for Chinese nationalism, to take up this duty under heaven’s mandate to save Taiwanese from oppression and terrible suffering.” Dressed in military fatigues and a beret, the lieutenant general called on officers to overthrow the “fraudulent DPP regime,”
‘NOT IMPOSSIBLE’: Acceptance to the UN would end the nation’s troubles, but it would be impossible to achieve without US backing, Legislative Speaker You Si-kun said The US might recognize Taiwan if war breaks out in the Taiwan Strait, Legislative Speaker You Si-kun (游錫堃) said yesterday while discussing politics with former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁). Speaking on Chen’s program on Smile Radio, You reminisced about his agrarian childhood, studies, the founding of the Democratic Progressive Party in 1986 and his eight years as Yilan County commissioner. Chen’s appointment of You as premier in February 2002 marked several firsts, as he was Taiwan’s youngest premier, as well as the first from a farming background and first democratically elected county leader to hold the office. Asked to share his views on
ONLY EXCEPTIONS: The mayors of the two largest cities voiced concerns over hidden cases, while all other local governments are to follow eased CECC guidelines All local governments, with the exception of Taipei and New Taipei City, are to allow dine-in services at restaurants after the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Friday announced that it would on Tuesday lower a nationwide COVID-19 alert to level 2. The center on July 8 allowed the resumption of dining at restaurants nationwide — despite keeping the alert level at 3. At the time, this prompted all cities and counties, except Penghu Country, to keep local dine-in bans in place. Following Friday’s CECC announcement that COVID-19 prevention measures would be further relaxed, the Taipei and New Taipei City governments
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs yesterday rejected the claim Beijing has been making about Taiwan’s status, while thanking US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman for raising concerns about Taiwan during her meeting with Chinese officials. Sherman met with Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅) on a visit to Tianjin on Sunday and Monday, with Wang urging Washington not to infringe on China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Taiwan is part of China, a fundamental fact that would never change, and China has the right to take any action needed to restrain Taiwanese independence, Wang said, urging Washington to abide