Utah Field Guide: Burbot

Last weekend, the Flaming Gorge Chamber of Commerce held the 8th annual Burt Bash at Flaming Gorge Reservoir. Burbot are an invasive species suspected of being illegally introduced into the Green River about ten years ago. Since their illlegal introduction, biologists have recorded a steady increase of the burbot population at the gorge and have documented the impact this fish is having on this fishery. The Burbot Bash started in 2009 by concerned anglers from a website called BigFishTackle.com. Since then the event has grown. This year’s bash had over 650 anglers that caught 3604 burbot.

(Mark Wilson, President Flaming Gorge Chamber) The lake trout fishing, the kokanee salmon, the bass. All the species in Flaming Gorge are special to us and when you have an illegally introduced species like a burbot that can really chance the trophy aspects of this fishery we are concerned. So the Burbot Bash is one way we can attack this, we get a lot of great support, but angler pressure it’s having all the folks come out.

Because burbot are considered invasive, you must kill one if you catch it.
In 2013, the Utah Legislature passed a new law that allows anglers to dispose of burbot without violating the state’s wasting statute. For more information log onto our Utah Field Guide on our Outdoors page at KSLTV.com.

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