Species above are divided into the general Trout/Salmon/Char groups based on their habbits. Clearly, the taimen is not a member of the char family, lenoks are hardly trout while sea trout and steelhead have no genetic differences with brown and rainbow trout respectively.
During their ocean phase, Coho have silver sides and dark blue backs. During their spawning phase, the jaws and teeth of the coho become hooked. They develop bright red sides, bluish green heads and backs, dark bellies and dark spots on their backs after they go in to fresh water. Sexually maturing coho develop a light pink or rose shading along the belly and the males may show a slight arching of the back. Mature adults have a pronounced red skin color with darker backs and average 28 inches (71 cm) and 7 to 11 pounds (3.2 to 5.0 kg) occasionally reaching 36 pounds (16 kg). Mature females may be darker than males, with both showing a pronounced hook on the nose.
The eggs hatch in the late winter or early spring after 6 to 7 weeks in the redd. Once hatched, they remain mostly immobile in the redd as the alevin life-stage, which lasts for 6–7 weeks. Alevin no longer have the protective egg shell, or chorion, and rely on their yolk sac for nourishment during growth. The alevin life stage is very sensitive to aquatic and sedimental contaminants. When the yolk sac is completely resorbed, the alevin leaves the redd. Young coho spend one to two years in their freshwater natal streams,often spending the first winter in off-channel sloughs, before transforming to the smolt life-stage. Smolts are generally 100–150 millimetres (3.9–5.9 in) and their parr marks are faded and the adult's characteristic silver scales start to dominate. Smolts migrate to the ocean from late March through July. Some fish leave fresh water in the spring, spend summer in brackish estuarine ponds and then return to fresh water in the fall. Coho salmon live in salt water for one to three years before returning to spawn. Some precocious males known as "jacks" return as two-year-old spawners. Spawning males develop a strongly hooked snout and large teeth.
The traditional range of the coho salmon runs from both sides of the North Pacific ocean, from Hokkaido, Japan and eastern Russian, around the Bering Sea to mainland Alaska, and south all the way to Monterey Bay, California. Coho salmon have also been introduced in all the Great Lakes, as well as many other landlocked reservoirs throughout the United States.
In their freshwater stages, coho feed on plankton and insects, and switch to a diet of small fishes as adults in the ocean. Spawning habitat is small streams with stable gravel substrates.
Salmonid species on the west coast of the United States have experienced dramatic declines in abundance during the past several decades as a result of human-induced and natural factors.
From a fishing perspective, Coho are quite interesting as they are aggressive and stay in shallower water which makes them more accessible than Chinook. When they first enter the rivers they can be caught on flies and lures quite successfully. They are easy targets in places where they stop to rest and settle in pools. I have found Mepps Aglia spinners in gold to be quite productive, but this fish can be caught on plugs and spoons as well. A hooked Coho may run and stay in deep water, but pulled close to shore it will roll. Along with the average size fish, in some rivers there is a run of Coho jacks that are not longer than 20" but fully mature. These small fish may be the Nature's solution to the low water conditions in some years.
|Spinning Reel||2500-4000||Daiwa, Shimano|
|Lures||1/2-3/4oz||Mepps, Blue Fox, Gibbs|
|Fly Line||7-9||SA, RIO, Cortland|
|Flies||4-1/0||Gamakatsu, Mustad, Tiemco|