COLUMBIA - Natural Resources Department officials have added hundreds of more weed-eating fish to Lake Murray.

About 1,100 carp have been put into the lake to deal with hydrilla and other underwater weeds, The State newspaper reported.

The fish are one of the main ways that the Natural Resources Department deals with weeds in the 47,000-acre lake.

The addition of the fish last month is the first since the state put more than 64,000 carp in the water in 2003 to stop the spread of hydrilla.

Officials think there were only about 4,000 of the original fish left in the lake. The carp are sterile and don't reproduce.

Officials say weeds are a problem in only about 50 acres of the lake now.

Hydrilla is a non-native weed first found in the lake in 1993. Fishermen apparently brought it in as fish food without recognizing the problems it could cause, a study found.

Initial use of herbicide and reducing lake levels for hydrilla control ended after concerns were raised about spraying chemicals in the lake that supplies drinking water. Boaters were unhappy about the reduced water levels.

Carp keep the lake in good shape for recreation, according to the Lake Murray Association. But some fishermen worry the carp are eating too many of the weeds that attract game fish.

Information from: The State, http://www.thestate.com