I am off to the Illinois River and the town of Bath, a small town that is about to bustle with national media and camera crews from across the nation. The Red Neck Fishing Derby is this weekend: a time of total mayhem and madness blended with camaraderie, fun and more than a touch of seriousness. We are going to war in small boats to battle invaders that threaten our Great Lakes and economy. But this is also a media - luring fishing derby, a derby that does not allow hooks or lines. Call it sensationalized total warfare with a southern flare against the spread of Asian Carp, the invasive species that is almost - but not quite yet - in Lake Michigan. During the tounge-in-cheek named derby the invading flying fish of nightmares are captured with nets as they leap over the boats and sometimes directly into them causing bruises and bumps and occasional serious injury. Asian carp, because of their size, fecundity and abiltity to consume incredibly large amounts of food could become the dominant species in the Great Lakes if they make it through the Chicago Ship and Sanitary Canal that connects the Mississippi River system with our lakes. They are almost here. At this very moment scaly swarms of these scaled invaders are flip flopping. And so is our government. It is time to order the Army Corp of Engineers to close the canal to restore that ecological barrier that we created. For if these creatures, that were brought here in the 90's to southern aquaculture facilities and then escaped during flooding become established, we and our Great Lake's way of life are fried. And now it's time to pack a helmet for my head, a life jacket for padding, my capture net, Illinois non-resident fishing license and of course a first aid /trauma kit, for this writer/naturalist/paramedic will also serve as boat medic on my carp assault team, not a bad idea with some of these finned monsters propelling themselves out of water like living missles from hell.