Burbot Bash A Huge Success As Anglers Remove Invasive Species From Flaming Gorge

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Game and Fish fisheries biologists Stephen Siddons (left) and John Walrath (right) scan burbot to check for a tag, as well as record the number of burbot caught, and the location of catch.

The 2019 Burbot Bash has come and gone but there is still plenty of burbot in the Gorge for you to catch.

The annual ice fishing derby featured 212 teams with a total of 695 participants from Wyoming, Utah, Colorado and Idaho.

A total of 3,791 burbot were removed from the Gorge. Despite heavy snowfall that occurred before the event and drifted-in access roads to the Gorge, many anglers used snowmachines and had no trouble getting around. 

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The 2019 Burbot Bash and LaBarge Ding the Ling ice fishing derbies aim to reduce the number of burbot and thereby the impact burbot are having on local fisheries.

“These derbies also provide a great opportunity to educate the public about the problems burbot are causing, to recruit anglers, and to remove thousands of burbot,” said Green River Fisheries Biologist John Walrath.

“Since burbot derbies began on the Gorge in 2010 nearly 40,000 burbot have been removed – this doesn’t include burbot harvested by anglers the rest of the year. The Game and Fish appreciates the time and effort the Flaming Gorge Chamber of Commerce to operate the Burbot Bash and fish staff from Utah Division of Wildlife Resources,” Walrath added.