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WbranchFebruary 6th, 2020, 5:13 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
This picture is related to a post by Summer_doug and his mysterious little fish. Someone mentioned it might be a steelhead smolt. This picture is what steelhead smolts generally look like. Quite a bit different than
Summer_doug's fish. While this fish is about 7" long even smaller smolt's have this same appearance.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
OldredbarnFebruary 6th, 2020, 5:18 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2608
I agree with you Matt...See my response to his post. -Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
MillcreekFebruary 6th, 2020, 6:03 pm
Healdsburg, CA

Posts: 356
I still believe it's a steelhead parr. These accounts are from California and show several lifestages of steelhead.

WbranchFebruary 6th, 2020, 6:10 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
I don't know - Summer_doug's fish has a deeply forked tail and there don't appear to be very many spots on the caudal fin like the steelhead smolt pictures I have seen. Maybe Jason could chime in hear with a more definitive and educated opinion of the origin of this little guy.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
MillcreekFebruary 6th, 2020, 6:24 pm
Healdsburg, CA

Posts: 356
Yeah, I agree that Jason's opinion would be welcome. I don't know either - it could be a salmon parr.
Summer_dougFebruary 7th, 2020, 3:05 am
Detroit, MI

Posts: 56
A poster here referenced Chinook salmon parr as the most likely identification. After looking at numerous pictures online, I could see the resemblance.

I also see similarities with Coho salmon parr, but I don't really know what to look for.

I've been using this as an opportunity to try and understand the life stages of our Michigan fish.
From Michigan
Jmd123February 7th, 2020, 8:58 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2610
Chinook is my guess. They do actually spawn here in MI once in a while!

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
Jmd123February 7th, 2020, 9:00 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2610

Chinook for sure! As I said, a high number of parr marks is distinctive.

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
SwpabrownFebruary 11th, 2020, 3:59 pm

Posts: 4
Hello new member here i am a lifelong trout nut looking forward to this forum
i cant help but think the pic is a rainbow they look alot like the wild rainbows we have here in a couple isolated headwater streams in pa jus a guess

WbranchFebruary 11th, 2020, 5:07 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
Hello pabrown,

I posted the picture of a steelhead (rainbow) smolt (a young trout or salmon) in response to the OP by Summer_doug about the identification of a very small trout species he caught in Michigan. That smolt is by no means wild and it was most likely raised in a hacthery. PA stocks 1 million smolts into the streams entering Lake Erie every year. I've read they get about a 10% return of adult steelhead. That's at least 100,000 adult fish to no more than about a dozen little creeks.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
TroutnutFebruary 20th, 2020, 9:51 pm
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2737
I posted in Summer_doug's thread too, but I think Summer_doug's fish is a Coho, and of course Wbranch's fish above is a rainbow/steelhead. I explained the reasons for going with Coho instead of Chinook in the other thread.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
WbranchFebruary 27th, 2020, 1:40 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
and of course Wbranch's fish above is a rainbow/steelhead.

I posted my picture because it is obvious Summer-doug's fish is NOT a steelhead.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.

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