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see smeltsmelt,
common name for a small, slender fish of the family Osmeridae. Most species are marine, but some ascend freshwater streams to spawn and others are landlocked in lakes. The rainbow or American smelt, Osmerus mordax, averages 10 in. (25 cm) in length and 1 lb (.
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WHAT: Eulachon, also known by the common names of smelt, candlefish and oilfish.
In "Candlefish" (not discussed in the book) the narrator is transformed in a dream into a yamamba-like creature who devours a man including his withered penis, which she describes as a dead candlefish.