You’re probably going to be easily forgiven for thinking that the rainbow trout is a multi-colored, dazzling specimen of fish! Yes – it’s more colorful than most – but being completely rainbow-colored would surely put it at risk of getting eaten by predators!
The rainbow trout is likely more diverse and interesting than you perhaps give it credit for being! Therefore, let’s take the time to look at what really makes this gilled specimen tick: Here’s 15 interesting facts about rainbow trout…
A rainbow trout is, technically, a salmon. It has the scientific name Oncorhynchus mykiss.
It’s thought that the average rainbow trout will live for up to six years in the wild, though captivity lifespans may vary.
You’ll find that a rainbow trout can grow up to 90cm in length and can weigh up to 9kg at heftiest. It’s a fairly bulky fish on the whole!
In fact, the heaviest rainbow trout ever recorded weighed a whopping 25.8kg!
Rainbow trout can generally be found in streams, rivers and other bodies of water; however, you can also find some that live in the ocean. Therefore, they are fairly flexible in terms of where they habituate!
Their diets can vary, too. A rainbow trout is likely to consume the eggs of other fish, as well as larvae, insects and other small creatures.
However, they do also need to be on the lookout for predators. It’s likely that fishing birds such as herons and even raccoons are known to go dipping in for a rainbow trout or two.
There are around 15 different species of rainbow trout in total which are common to North American waterways.
They are commonly fished for by humans, too, as they are a fantastic source of various nutrients – particularly omega-3.
A rainbow trout is, as stated, not multicolor, however, it is notable for a thin red stripe which runs along its body. Otherwise, you can normally spot this type of fish thanks to its white belly and its array of black dots and spots.
The rainbow trout is hunted both for food, as stated, as well as for sport. You can find it across most continents, with the major exception being Antarctica.
The color of a rainbow trout is likely to vary from area to area. That’s because the nutrition they consume in their habitat can have a knock-on effect for the way their skin appears. For example, you can find rainbow trout which are pink or orange!
Rainbow trout tend to avoid eating water vegetation, making them ironclad carnivores on the whole.
A rainbow trout, as a technical salmon, will also exhibit similar breeding behaviours. For example, a trout will return to its own place of birth to lay eggs, where they will need to dig deep in gravel. How does a trout dig? With its tail!
However, not all rainbow trout will head home to lay eggs. The freshwater varieties, for example, can birth young anywhere they please!
Do you know any interesting facts about Rainbow Trout that we’ve missed? Share them with us in the comments section below!