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Are you interested in learning how to catch burbot? Burbot is not one of the sexiest gamefish that many anglers target although that is gradually changing. Long ago it was not thought of as worthy to catch, but times are changing. Burbot is most active during winter and resides mainly at the bottom.
They are less active during other seasons which makes it challenging when targeting them. In this article, we share information on how to catch burbot to help you catch more burbot.
Table of Contents
How To Identify Burbot
Burbot has a long and slender body and looks like a cross between an American eel and a brown bullhead. it has a distinct tiger-like pattern. Its skin is slimy and has a layer of tiny scales. Burbots have rows of tiny teeth used to capture baitfish.
How To Catch Burbot
Burbot can be caught all year round using standard bait techniques. They are most active after sunset and into the night when they come out to eat. Most anglers target burbot during the winter and go ice fishing for them.
Burbot is a voracious predator and will eat crayfish, minnows, perch, squid, herring, suckers, whitefish, smelt, and many other baitfish. Crayfish is the main prey for burbot and they are often found in habitats around cliffs and rocky areas. Therefore, when learning how to catch burbot, fish for them in habitats with rocky areas and cliffs.
A medium-heavy or heavy action rod paired with a 2000 or 2500 spinning reel and ten-pound braided ice fishing line will work well when learning how to catch burbot. They seem to be attracted to glow lures and many anglers use glow jig heads and spoons tipped with minnows.
Burbot will come to investigate after feeling the vibration of the glow lure and that will be your best chance of catching them at the bottom. Fly fishing, spinning, and still fishing are other fishing methods that can be used to catch burbot.
Best Bait For Burbot
Crayfish are the main prey for burbot. Crayfish can be found in habitats around rocky areas and cliffs. When learning how to catch burbot, target these habitats or use crayfish as bait to catch burbot.
Perch is another fish that anglers use to catch burbot.
Minnows work well as bait when targeting burbot.
Suckers are another popular bait used when fishing for burbot. It works well and attracts burbot.
Whitefish is another baitfish that works well when fishing for burbot as they like to eat whitefish.
How To Fish For Burbot In Lakes
You can catch burbot in lakes with regular fishing techniques. You can cast lures or bait into the lake using crayfish, minnows, perch, herring, squid, or other baitfish to catch burbot. Burbot resides at the bottom and anglers often use glow lures to get their attention and get them moving to check out the glow.
How To Catch Burbot From Shore
When fishing for burbot from the shore, you can cast lures. When you cast a jig, slowly work it along the bottom. Burbot prey on crayfish which are found in habitats with cliffs and rocky features. When you fish from the shore, look for areas where crayfish may be seeking cover and you may find burbot in that area also.
How To Catch Burbot Ice Fishing
When ice fishing for a burbot, drill many holes early to avoid disturbing the burbot during “prime time”. Fishing close to the bottom at 20-60 feet will be more productive. However, you can catch burbot at any depth.
If you are fishing for burbot with many lines, spread them out across a range of depths when starting. Work the lines at the depths that produce more burbot. Always have the lures close to the bottom and if you don’t get a bite from a hole for more than 15 minutes, move to another hole.
How To Catch Burbot In The Summer
Burbot can be caught all year and you can catch them during the summer. When fishing for burbot during the summer, you can set your bait on the rod and cast it into the river or lake. Most anglers use glow lures since burbot are bottom feeders. The glow lures will attract them and they will then go for the bait on the line.
How To Clean Burbot
Burbot is a slimy-skinned fish and anglers usually put a towel in a container to hold the fish when caught. It can be challenging to clean the burbot depending on the cleaning method you use. One of the easiest methods of cleaning a burbot is to hang it by its head from a nail and cut around the skin close to the neck.
Then use needlenose pliers to pull the skin down to its tail. If you have cleaned bullfrogs, it is similar to how you skin a bullfrog and pull the skin away using a set of pliers.
Burbot Fishing Tips
- Burbots are most active at night. They will hide under rocks and in holes and cracks during the day. In the evening, they will come out of hiding to feed.
2. The first few hours after sunset and before sunrise are the best times to catch a burbot.
3. Burbot prey on crayfish which are often found in habitats around cliffs and rocky areas. So when you are learning how to catch burbot, always target the habitats around cliffs and rocky areas with slopes less than 60 degrees where crayfish may be residing.
4. The mouths of bays hidden within large cliffs are also prime areas to fish for burbot, especially if there is shoal or gradual sloping with it.
5. Lures that glow work well when fishing for burbot.
6. Bait such as crayfish or minnows works well when learning how to catch burbot.
7. Burbots grow to be large and have hard mouths, therefore a strong fishing line and sharp hooks will work well when fishing for burbot.
8. When fishing for burbot, jig a rod lightly while you keep an eye on your stationary rods or tip-ups. Always be jigging one rod while waiting for flags to go up.
9. Check tip-ups every 20 minutes.
10. Burbot moves in small schools. If you catch one, there is a good chance that others are in that vicinity. Get your lure back in the water.
11. Burbot becomes very active when the water temperature is below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
12. Burbot spawn in winter on rocks or gravel bars in 2 to 20 feet of water.
13. It is easier to catch burbot during the spawning season than after the spawning season as they go to deeper water until it is time to eat or spawn again which will bring them back to shallow water.
The Bottom Line
Burbot is a bottom fish that preys on crayfish, minnows, herring, perch, and other baitfish. They can be challenging to catch as they are found at the bottom and only come closer to the surface to spawn. They are most active during the night when they come out to feed.
In this article, we share information on how to catch burbot to help you be successful when fishing for burbot to cross it off your fishing wish list. You can also learn how to catch triggerfish, how to catch swordfish, how to catch bullfrogs, and how to catch sailfish.