SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) — The next time you’re at a fancy seafood restaurant, try ordering “copi” and see what kind of reaction you get from the wait staff. You might get some perplexed looks because “copi” is a fancy new term for a lowly invasive fish that inhabit South Dakota rivers and streams.

It’s part of an effort, which began in the Great Lakes Region, to re-brand invasive carp as a tasty, desirable, healthy meal. The re-branding effort is starting to ripple into South Dakota where Game, Fish and Parks sees plenty of potential.

They’re the infamous fish that leap out of the water and into your boat. But South Dakota fishing enthusiasts rarely jump at the chance to eat these invasive carp.

“A lot of people hear the word carp and they have a negative feeling towards that, and just assume that it’s going to taste bad. But actually, silver carp, bighead carp, they’re actually quite pleasant to consume and they’re very healthy to consume as well,” Game, Fish & Parks Aquatic Invasive Species Coordinator Tanner Davis said.

The invasive carp pose a threat in South Dakota and other states because they gobble up food for native game fish.

“We’re just concerned about furthering their expansion. They’ve made it all the way up to North Dakota up the James River with the lack of barriers in the James River,” Davis said.

Wildlife agencies have taken steps to reduce the invasive carp numbers for years. In Minnesota right now, crews are using a form of electro-shock to stun the carp below.

“It sends electricity in front of the boat by connecting an anode and a cathode just like a battery,” Jordan Wein of WSB Engineering said.

A less electrifying effort involves putting a charge into people’s taste buds.

“The silver carp that I had came out of the Missouri River was excellent and it was good tasting. I think we made it into cakes, some fish cakes, so it was very good,” Game, Fish & Parks Regional Wildlife Supervisor Emmett Keyser said.

Invasive carp are undergoing a marketing makeover by getting a new name: “copi,” short for copious, as in a large amount of fish.

“Copi is definitely a more fun word than invasive carp,” Davis said.

South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks even has a video that shows people how to prepare copi for consumption.

“And now, it’s time for Cooking Carp with Mike…”

Silver carp are more high-maintenance than some other fish because of all their bones.

“And when you get those small bones out of there, which does take a few extra steps when you’re cleaning the fish, it was great, I mean it was excellent fish,” Keyser said.

South Dakota is already getting a few nibbles from companies interested in taking invasive carp out of the state’s rivers and using them for bait.

“They’re actually heat-treating it and turning it into somewhat of a power-bait, something you would use for artificial bait here in South Dakota, so they’re getting very creative in how they’re using these fish,” Davis said.

“Maybe even develop some commercial fisheries that can be utilized for things like pet food, or canned for human consumption as well. That could have some beneficial, positive effects on some of the populations,” Keyser said.

There have been efforts for years to change public perception about invasive carp, without much success. But attaching a new name could be one way of getting more of these invasive fish out of South Dakota rivers and streams, as long as hungry customers are willing to take the bait.

“I think just giving them a chance to try that fish flesh and find out hey, these are actually pretty good to eat,” Keyser said.

Restaurants in Chicago started serving “copi” last month as part of a market testing campaign to see if customers have an appetite for eating the fish.