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Old 11-15-2011, 11:01 PM
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Default Cutbow?

I spent the day fishing a creek near home. It was cold but I caught quite a few 6-9" rainbows between removing ice from the rod guides. I was about to call it a day when I came across one more pool on a bend in the stream. I was fishing a small unweighted slumpbuster with a 3 wt rod. I cast downstream into the pool and just began a slow retrieve when this fish hammered the streamer. It put up quite a fight and when I landed it I was not sure if it was a cutthroat, cutbow or just a unique rainbow. I snapped a couple pictures before sending it on its way. The only fish I have ever caught in this stream are rainbows and browns. Can someone identify it for me?

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Old 11-15-2011, 11:29 PM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

can't help with the ID, but that is a nice fish.

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Old 11-15-2011, 11:49 PM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

Certainly looks like mixed ancestry to me. milt.
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Old 11-15-2011, 11:51 PM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

Thanks Jim! I didn't think of this before, but I just looked up the species in this stream and it lists westslope cutthroat trout. I compared a photo and it looks very close to this one.
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Old 11-15-2011, 11:58 PM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

pab, in the first picture I was certain it was a cutt-bow, but with that second shot I'd call it a cutthroat plain and simple.

The slashes under the gill plate are the certain give away, it is most definitely a Cutt of some sort. The top pic's color is washed out so it looks like a hybrid, but in that nice hand hold shot that fish looks mostly cutty, I'll tell you why.

The spots are large, concentrated at the tail end of the torso and very sparse around the head -- rainbows generally have an consistent pattern up the body of the fish and the spots are smaller, as you know. Also there is an absence of nearly all rainbow coloration - no red band, no green back, no white belly.

Often the cuttbow hybrids will basically look like a rainbow with the slashes or sometime look a more cutty but always show some definitive sign of the 'bow.

Of course if there are rainbows in this stream then the odds of hybridization are high, but this my friend is a cutthroat, in my book. And a nice one.

You better do a little more exploring in that stream!
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Old 11-16-2011, 12:13 AM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

Thanks Dean! Thats the first cutthroat for me in this stream (which is a tributary of the Clark Fork). I've caught a few browns in the 12-14" range there but this is the only cut and my biggest fish in that stream so far.
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Old 11-16-2011, 04:59 AM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

The cuttbows I caught in Arkansas looked like a Rainbow but had the markings under the jaw.
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Old 11-16-2011, 06:23 AM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

I agree with Dean. It's impossible to say that it's a pure cutthroat , but it's certainly far closer to a cutthroat than a rainbow.
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Old 11-16-2011, 08:09 AM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

Great looking fish!
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Old 11-16-2011, 08:39 AM
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Default Re: Cutbow?

I agree with Dean- from the pics it looks as though there are few if any black spots on the top of the head, and practically no white tipping on the ventral fins. Probably not 100% but most state fish and game agencies would call it a cutt.


Nice catch!
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