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That's a moray: Eel pulled from Lake Coeur d'Alene

by BILL BULEY
Staff Writer | May 15, 2024 2:25 PM

COEUR d'ALENE —  A moray eel was pulled from the waters of Lake Coeur d'Alene on Tuesday.

And you might have guessed, the tropical, saltwater fish was dead.

"It's not a species we've ever seen," said TJ Ross with Idaho Fish and Game in Coeur d'Alene on Wednesday. "It certainly doesn't belong here."

Ross said someone reported to Fish and Game they found a moray eel just off the shoreline in the lake near Higgens Point. It was perhaps a little more than a foot long.

He said if someone released it alive into the lake, it would have died quickly. 

"Fresh and cold water, it had everything going against it," Ross said.

He said it was more likely someone tossed the moray eel carcass into the lake and it was found off Coeur d'Alene Lake Drive.

Ross said Fish and Game discourages people from placing fish in waters where they are not native, as it can cause all kinds of problems that affect the lake and people.

"In all cases, it's against the law," Ross said.

He said with the moray eel, there was no chance of it surviving in Lake Coeur d'Alene, "but the principle still applies: Don't put things where they don't belong."