candlefish


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candlefish:

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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Gulls wheeled and screamed over the first slug of spawning candlefish. Water ouzels on rocks and logs bobbed, dipped, then marched into and under the current.
In fact, smelt are so rich in oil that the Indians would sometimes place a wick inside a dried eulachon and burn it like a candle - a practice that led some Europeans to dub it the "candlefish."