Like all fish, carp use a variety of fins and internal buoyancy features to manoeuvre their ways through the rivers, lakes and ponds that they inhabit. European carp (Cyprinus carpio) way up to 80 pounds and can grow to over 5 feet in length. It takes muscle to move all of that carp! Specifically, carp utilize an intricate system of muscle blocks to power their fins.
Picture taken from http://www.freewebs.com/questforcarp/anatomyofcarp.htm
As these blocks of muscle, called myomeres, relax and contract alternately on each side of the fish, beginning at the head and ending at the tail, the various fins of the carp propel it forward. This occurs as multiple waves are created alongside of the fish. The end part of each individual wave creates thrust against the surrounding water and propels the fish into moving forwards through the water.
Pectoral Fins and Pelvic/ Ventral Fins:
Dorsal Fins and Adipose Fins:
As a carp descends into deeper waters, exterior pressure increases and causes the gas of the swim bladder to be compressed. This causes the fish to sink. If the carp directs itself into shallower waters, exterior pressure decreases and the swim bladder expands. This causes the fish to float.
It's not really that easy to do - unless you know what to look for. Firstly, the male carp has well-developed muscles a around the pelvic fin; females do not. During spawning seasons, males will develop tubercles (white bumps) on their heads and gill plates. Also, females are significantly fatter during this time because they are carrying lots of eggs.
Locating Big Carp in the Spring
Carp Location in the Summertime
Finding Large Carp in the Cold Winter
Location of Most Carp in Autumn
The Case for Quality Carp Bait
Fishing Tactics for Snags & Trees
Boilie Placement on the Hair rig
Different types of carp rigs to use
A Carp's Digestive System in Detail
Ingredients used in Common Carp Baits
Common Baiting Tactics When Fishing
The Various Carp Bait used to Catch Bigger Carp
When to use Pop-ups or Bottom Bait for Carp Fishing
How to complete a Baiting Campaign on Lakes & Ponds
The Basic Carp Fishing Baits Used to Catch Large Carp
Fishing Tactics when Fishing for Carp during Long-stay Sessions