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Know the West

Name that fish!

  Dear HCN,

Idaho Indian tribes won a long culture war when a legislative committee recently agreed to strike the word "squaw" from the map. But the tribes' victory doesn't let anglers off the hook. What are we to call the fish formerly known as squaw?

A while back, state and federal agencies agreed to call them "northern pikeminnows." Ask anyone who fishes the Snake River if they call squawfish "northern pikeminnows."

The tribes should complete their cultural quest and come up with a name that is user-friendly to fishermen. If they can't, let's give the honor to one of the pro-squawfish, anti-salmon Idaho senators.

Heads, we call them "Craigfish"; tails, we call them "Crapos."

Wayne de la Motte
Boise, Idaho