Western NC Fly Fishing Guides guide to identifying the trout of Western NC.
The fish illustrated below are what you can expect to see in our Western NC Trout Streams. The fish from top to bottom are:
Rainbow Trout: The rainbows trout is a silver base color with spots on the body and fins and a rainbow stripe down the side, just above the lateral line. The rainbow stripe is more or less prominent as it is illustrated. The tail is concave in shape. You can often tell you have a Rainbow Trout on before you get it to the net, by the fact it is so active and often aerobatic. They are sometimes troublesome in the net because they don’t just want to jump around, they like to spin.
Brook Trout: Note the “brain” pattern on it’s back, the light orange hue of the pectoral, medial and anal fin as well as a white leading edge on those fins. The sides of the fish has soft spots.
Brown Trout: The Brown Trout has more defined spots on the sides, as spots on its dark back and lacks the “brain pattern” on it’s back like the Brook Trout. It’s tail is also blunted square in comparison to the Brook and Rainbow Trout.
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