Beware...

Smalma

Active Member
#16
Pat -
First did the right thing; when in doubt release the fish - that is err on the side of the resource.

However the second picture makes it very clear that the fish in question was indeed dinner - that is a coho. The longer fin rays on the leading edge of the anal fin cinches the coho call. Coastal cutthroat will almost always have spotting below the lateral line and again to my eye the over all coloration says it is not a cutthroat. Did you happen to notice whether its adipose fin was clipped?

Something to remember is that this time of year there are lots of maturing coho including jacks that "resident" coho size that as maturing fish will have fixed scales and begin taking on coloration other than the more typical black over white that we normally associate with fish such as resident coho and other immature salmonids in deep water. Those maturing coho exhibit quite a range in size from a foot or so to well in excess of 30 inches. It is those jacks and smallish 3 year old fish (18 to 22 inches) that most often are confused with other species.

curt
 
#17
I've got to back Pat up here, that's a SRC all day long. The orange throat flashes are practically non existent in some of the bigger middle sounds fish that I have caught.

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Smalma

Active Member
#20
Just the saw the picture of the second fish.

That fish is clearly a nice cutthroat. Notice the difference in the spotting pattern between the first and second fish and the differences in over all coloration. Notice that in the cutthroat both pectoral and ventral fins yellowish coloration. The coho will have more fin rays in their anal fin (13 or more) than the cutthroat (12 or less) which results in shorter appearing fin in the cutthroat versus that of the coho.

Curt
 

Pat Lat

Mad Flyentist
#22
I didnt check the adipose by the way I found some pics of very similar looking coho on the interweb so now I'm confused , but the face looks different, not that the face is the deciding factor or anything..

coho face.JPG
gig harbor coho.JPG
 

Pat Lat

Mad Flyentist
#25
Looking at the "how bout this" pic, the tail sure has a lot of spots all over it. Plus the head is pretty round. I would have identified this as a cutt.
Yeah I knew that one was a cutty. They look so similar though, I figured Id throw it in for comparison.
 

Pat Lat

Mad Flyentist
#26
Wow, the more and more I look at pics from past threads the more I realize how much variation there is in our resident coho population.Some pics look almost nothing like the fish I caught today, and others are exact matches. I have a feeling that I know of a few very good "cutthroat" beaches in my area that Ive been releasing coho at for a couple years now. That kicks ass.
 
#30
Ah, Pat, I thought the "how about this" was a different shot of the same fish, which is obviously a cutt. The first two you posted are hard to tell for sure, that yellow makes it hard to tell, but the scale pattern screams coho. Pictures drive me crazy when I look at them after the fact. But I have to agree, it has more coho clues than Searun, shocking that Curt was right again!

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