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Chris_3g has attached these 2 pictures. The message is below.
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15" Brown - #16 Adams
15" Brown - #16 Adams
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16" - 17" (I'll call it a 16.5") Brown - #12 beadhead nymph (olive body, brown thorax)
16" - 17" (I'll call it a 16.5") Brown - #12 beadhead nymph (olive body, brown thorax)
Chris_3gJune 7th, 2007, 8:31 pm
Posts: 59Hey forum members. Thanks for all of the advice and posting and whatnot. It's definitely been a HUGE amount of help reading everyone's opinions.

I have a question though. These are the latest (and largest to date) fish that I've caught. They're both browns, but they're very different, and I just wanted to know why. Even the fight was different for each fish. The 15 incher seemed to want to pull really hard and then give up - this was repeated a few times. The 16.5 incher wanted to fight more consistently, harder, and longer. I assume this is normal, but was curious what you all had to say about it. Thanks!

TroutnutJune 7th, 2007, 8:57 pm
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2737
It looks like the 15 incher is a stocker and the 17 incher is wild, based on the coloration and the beat-up tail on the 15-incher. But I'm not an expert on telling the difference.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
CaseyPJune 8th, 2007, 7:11 am
Arlington, VA/ Mercersburg, PA

Posts: 653
hey, great photos! posed the same question myself to a guide one day after spouse and i caught dissimilar wild trouts: "Fish are different for the same reason people are different." hardly scientific, but...
"You can observe a lot by watching." Yogi Berra
GONZOJune 8th, 2007, 8:25 am
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681

The smaller brown appears to be recently stocked. The larger one is clearly in better color and condition, and is probably a holdover. Both fish seem to show the traits of a domestic brown trout strain. Although wild browns can display these same traits (especially if the wild population was derived from the same domestic strain), the eroded tail and wrinkled edge of the pectoral fin on the larger, cleaner brown suggest that it originated in a hatchery and has had time to color up and repair some fin damage. (The dorsal fin appears to be folded over, but I suspect that if it were unfolded, you'd also notice a kink in the leading edge about a third of the way up from the base.) Your account of the differences in their fight would reflect that as well. You didn't mention whether that water is known to have a wild population, but at least it appears suitable for allowing some of the stocked fish to survive and even thrive. Most of the difference between these fish can probably be attributed to length of time spent in the stream. If the smaller fish holds over, it will probably look very much like the bigger one in time.

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