MENASHA, Wis. (WFRV) — The Fox River Navigational System Authority is looking to open the Menasha Locks again after they have been closed since September 2015 due to the invasive species, the round goby.
The plan calls for an electric barrier and water velocity system that would prevent the invasive species from getting into Lake Winnebago and would be constructed just downstream of the lock.
Electrodes would be recessed in the bottom of the channel. This type of a barrier will allow boat traffic to pass through the channel while halting the passage of fish. The barrier delivers a pulsing DC current to fish entering the channel, causing them to turn around and not enter the lock; it also uses a water velocity process to prevent the round goby from moving into the lock channel. The DC current in the water is not dangerous to humans.
A similar barrier is currently being used in Chicago as a way to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes but others have been operational since the 1950s and 1960s.