Saturday, 7 February 2015

Warmth gives ugly invasive fish brief reprieve from anglers

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Warm weather has helped grant a reprieve this year to a homely, eel-like and especially slimy invasive fish pursued by anglers as they compete for big money in two ice-fishing tournaments on the Wyoming-Utah line.
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The goal of both annual events is to remove burbot (pronounced BUR'-but) from Flaming Gorge Reservoir.
Burbot are known for being best caught in frigid weather using smelly bait, for wrapping their slippery bodies around fishermen's arms — and for being delicious. Some call them the "poor man's lobster."

But wind and highs in the 50s have kept the reservoir mostly ice-free lately. Much of the remaining ice near shore is getting dicey to walk on.

"It's still about 6 inches thick, but we don't recommend going out on it now," said Les Tanner, owner of the Buckboard Marina and host of the Burbot Classic tournament.

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