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There are more than 100 species of carp in the
world. The main species of carp found in Poland and over most of Europe are the common
carp (common, mirror and leather), silver, and grass.
The Common Carp has a deep, thick body, strongly arched to dorsal fin, flattened below. Grey to brassy green in colour with large, dark edged scales. They live in large, sluggish ponds or pools with mud or silt bottoms and aquatic vegetation. Carp are omnivorous and consume a variety of plant and animal tissues. A carp will suck up a mouthful of bottom muck and detritus, expel it into the water, and select the food items. More details.
Silver carp are native to East Asia and inland rivers of China. Silver carp are deep-bodied, narrow fish. Their deep silvery color that looks greenish near their upper sides. They are highly efficient at straining their diet of plankton from the water and have many long, thin gill-rakers. Their scales are small, thin and overlapping, and their eyes are positioned far forward and project downward. They have upturned mouths and no teeth. Silver carp are prolific breeders and are known as 'river rabbits' by some! In some places, notaby the USA, silver carp are known as 'crazy fish' or 'flying carp' because of their tendency to jump out of the water, often at people in boats. The silver carp is generally regarded as the most palatable of the carp family and eaten by many Polish families at Christmas as an alternative to the more traditional but less tasty but bottom-feeding common carp. The Silver carp has a firm flesh, slightly translucent, and white and mild-tasting when cooked.
The silver carp is considered to be impossible to catch with a traditional fishing rod.
The grass carp is native to East Asia but now found all over Europe and America. The grass carp got its name from its love of aquatic weeds. It has a thick, elongated body with a broad, blunt head and a prominent upper lip that is visible from above. Its scales are a rich golden brown and form a cross-hatching pattern.