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  1. #11

    Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    White tipped fins might indicate a hybrid in Colorado where rainbows are a recent introduction, but white tipped fins are normal on both the native rainbows and native cutthroat from the area that fish was caught so you can't base it on that alone. The native redband rainbows where I live usually have orange throat slashes and white tipped fins, but nobody considers them a cuttbow. They do share common ancestors, though, that's well established.

    Ard, your fish looks like a rainbow with odd coloring to me. A couple years ago I caught a single rainbow with an orange stripe. Not red or pink, bright orange. I wish I'd taken a picture of it, I've never seen anything like it before or since. You just never know what you're going to catch some days.

  2. Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    Ard - my money is on a rainbow/brown trout hybrid. It has the characteristics of both.
    I know some (most?) will claim this to be impossible, but I claim that it would be dependant of whether the water is stocked or not. A few years ago a very strangely patterned salmonid was genetically identified as a brown trout/arctic char hybrid. Not very likely in a natural ecosystem, but it was a stocked water.

  3. #13
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    Hi troutman,

    Based on where I found the oddly marked fish I'd say there is almost a zero chance of there being a brown trout anywhere near. The stocking of trout does occur in Alaska but as far as I know they go into still water environments like the lakes in Anchorage and Palmer. Once you get out on the remote rivers here any fish you find will be a wild one that came from the river.

    Hi flav,

    I had pretty much wrote it off as a rainbow trout with some strange markings. I just posted the picture because I had it

    Anywhere can be the land of great expectations, broken dreams, or paradise found, it's all up to you.

    Life On The Line - Alaska Fishing with Ard
    Ard's Forum blog, Alaska Outdoors

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  5. #14
    Join Date
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    Southeast Idaho
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    Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    There is a lot of variation in rainbows as well as cutthroats. One small creek here in Idaho has rainbows with the most unusual coloration that I have ever seen. It is a brushy little creek, and I don't fish it often, so I only came up with a couple of pictures. When I talked with one of the fisheries biologists he thought that many many years ago McCloud Rainbows from Northern California were planted there. But this is the typical coloration on the average rainbows from this creek. I have caught some even more colorful.



    Of course the Monsters Inc bandaid is there for contrast.
    Cindy

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  7. #15
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    Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    Quote Originally Posted by flav View Post
    White tipped fins might indicate a hybrid in Colorado where rainbows are a recent introduction, but white tipped fins are normal on both the native rainbows and native cutthroat from the area that fish was caught so you can't base it on that alone. The native redband rainbows where I live usually have orange throat slashes and white tipped fins, but nobody considers them a cuttbow. They do share common ancestors, though, that's well established.

    Ard, your fish looks like a rainbow with odd coloring to me. A couple years ago I caught a single rainbow with an orange stripe. Not red or pink, bright orange. I wish I'd taken a picture of it, I've never seen anything like it before or since. You just never know what you're going to catch some days.
    We can agree to disagree. But I think that you are shorting yourself of some potential understanding and maybe overlooking the fact that the fish you are catching are carrying some form of hybridization within their genetic line....coulda been 5-10-20 years ago....they are not completely 100% pure species, maybe 95%-99%Rainbow, but not pure. NATIVE does NOT equal pure species....native, if anything, gave that geneolgy of fish greater time to cross-breed. And the other "species" of trout in your area (redband Rainbows etc,)...they are subspecies.....better known as hybrids.

    Colorado newly introduced to Rainbow Trout? Or any other trout form for that matter? How about in the 1800s !! Guess that's new, kinda compared to dinosaur days- but trout have been in the Rocky Mountains a day or two now. White tipped fins have nothing to do with when a trout was introduced anywhere....it has everything to do with displaying the sign of being a hybridization somewhere within it's genetics.

    But, it wouldn't matter of the fish had been in any location for 500 years...they cross-bred and different subspecies are present....particularly in trout which have literally dozens and dozens of subspecies EVERYWHERE they exist.

    You may be catching a certain trout species and all the trout you catch may look like the same ("normal" as you call it)....all may have white tipped fins, and you think that's "normal" for that species, however, guess what, they carry a hybrid cross somewhere...and that areas population of fish are affected by that cross....could been a dozen years ago...doesn't matter, they may all look that way, doesn't matter....there is a hybrid cross in there.....to list every possible subspecies of potential cross would be a daunting task, so we simply call them all Rainbow, Brown, Brook, Cutthroat, steelhead, whatever....as that's what they "PREDOMINANTLY" appear to be, (Hybrid Zygosity), but they are still not 100% completely pure species. Your white tipped fin catches are "NORMAL" for your area...that giant ongoing gene pool of fish where you are, were hybrid influenced at some point in time. Normal for your area, sure, but nonetheless still hybrid influenced. Native? yes. Rainbow trout common to your geography? Sure. 100% Pure Species? Nope.

    Colorado Fishing Network: Species of Fish in Colorado

    Rainbow trout - Wikipedia (read the second paragraph variances in coloration and WHY?- Subspecies (hybrid influence) is why.)

  8. #16

    Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    Cooutlaw, I wholeheartedly agree wth you, there is a lot of hybridzation and shared genetics in all these rainbow and cutthroat subspecies on the west coast, and I was definitely referring to what we consider normal in the strains of rainbows and cutts that we have in the PNW. Cuttbow is a term you just never hear in this part of the country, even though they're probably common in the waters where both species exist naturally.

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  10. #17
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    Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    Quote Originally Posted by flav View Post
    Cooutlaw, I wholeheartedly agree wth you, there is a lot of hybridzation and shared genetics in all these rainbow and cutthroat subspecies on the west coast, and I was definitely referring to what we consider normal in the strains of rainbows and cutts that we have in the PNW. Cuttbow is a term you just never hear in this part of the country, even though they're probably common in the waters where both species exist naturally.
    Flav, You are spot on, and I actually think we were saying the same thing in different terminology. We all understand that "rainbows" of the west could have a dozen or more subspecies hybridizations in them, the subspecies is why we see so many dang fish all colored so differently....it would be nearly impossible to call out what's in each fish without some crazy DNA test or something.....kinda like going to an animal shelter where every black dog in there is called a Lab mix,....these trout have been all kinds of mixed up over the decades....it's funny, that each region has their own descriptors, I've lived both in the PNW and the Rockies, so luckily I understand some of the nomenclatures, like humpy's in Washington are Pinks in Canada...We actually have a smaller version of a fish similar in looks to your Red Band's in Colorado that we see on rare occasion, it's a cross between a green back cutthroat and rainbow....we also have tiger trout, which are simply called "natives" in other parts of the southwest....tomato -tomato kind of thing. Truth be known, and a few whiskey's in a fishery guy, I think we'd find that public pressure and the associated demand for stocking of non sterile fish has caused native areas to be anything but native anymore. It'd be a lot easier if they were still just a regular ole' black Lab.

  11. #18

    Default Re: Please Help Identify!

    I'll add to cooutlaws post that the OP's rainbow also sports sort of parr markings on its flanks, not typical of adult rainbows. That fish could well be a hatchery fish dumped out of a helicopter. There is a wonderful historical reference book about rainbow trout called "An Entirely Synthetic Fish" explaining the legacy through hatchery domestication and extensive unplanned planting the near total absence of pure wild strain rainbows. Every rainbow trout in Montana is genetically hatchery junk strain fish reproducing in the wild with the exception of rainbows in the Kootenai drainage which are the real thing. If you look for a pure-ish none-migratory McCloud River Rainbow, look in Patagonia (planted in 1910) or, to a lesser extent, the upper Delaware (circa 1980's) but not in the McCloud. Alaska though has not had much hatchery planting I imagine and Ard's fish is a fascinating puzzle.

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