Rainbow Trout

Oncorhynchus mykiss

Current British record: 31lb 4oz (2003) J Lawson, Watercress Trout Fishery, Devon

Rainbow Trout

The Rainbow Trout is a well known beautiful fish. Famous for their acrobatic aerial displays and impressive stamina. This species will tend to jump out of the water in an attempt to break free instead of other species who will dive to the depths and head for cover.

Weight

With an impressive UK top weight of 33lb 4oz these fish grow large in the right environment. Their average weight is between 2-4 lbs within the British Isles but records show that a 30 pounder is not uncommon in other countries.

Length

The average size of an adult Rainbow Trout is between 20 to 30 inches or 51 to 76 cm from tip to tail.

Age

It has been recorded that the average lifespan of a Rainbow Trout will range from 4 to 6 years. But, It is thought that within the right conditions they can survive up to 12 years of age.

Location

Rainbow Trout survive well in cool, clear rivers and streams, though some will follow the river out to sea leaving their fresh water home behind. If your hunting a rainbow you may have to adapt your methods to the environment. If in a river, You will have to look close to gravel bottoms where the fish will hunt for its food, boulders, logs and deeps waters are a favourite spot. Within a pond or lake, the Rainbow may be more active in its environment and will be brave when seeking a meal, Rainbows may spend time close to weed lines for protection and cover.

Behaviour

The Rainbow Trout is known for its exciting acrobatic aerial displays, The Rainbow Trout is full of energy and will fight for long periods of time with an attempt to escape a catch. Rainbow Trout will stick together in groups and will rarely swim solo.

Feeding

Insects are a Rainbows favourite food, a rainbow will not be picky on the age of the insect they will eat grubs and fully formed insects too. Being aggressive feeders, Rainbow trout are known to be carnivorous and may sample a meal of their own kind. Spinners, spoons and plugs show some impressive results when angling, if trying with a fly, you may need to assess the waters and change your tactics to suit. Changing your approach will ensure that your fly sits within range of a hungry Rainbow.

Maturity

Being a fast developer the Rainbow Trout with reach sexual maturity earlier than other trout. Rainbow Trout are known to spawn when coming to the end of their second year of life. At this time they will be around 12 - 16 inches in length.

Spawning

It is quite rare for a Rainbow Trout to successfully breed in the wild, many are bred in hatcheries to live their life in a lake or pond. As the conditions have to be perfect there are only a few areas within the UK that can support the breeding of a Rainbow Trout. The Rainbow will breed from January to April, The males will grow a pronounced hook on their bottom jaw and will darken in colour. When the female is ready to lay her eggs she will position herself to the bottom of the waters and will lay her 200 to 8000 eggs within the gravel, they will lay there until fertilised. Hatching times will vary depending on conditions and temperature, It can be from as little as 2 weeks and up to 4 months. It is not uncommon for river owners to introduce Rainbow into their stretch to increase the population.

It is quite rare for a Rainbow Trout to successfully breed in the wild, many are bred in hatcheries to live their life in a lake or pond. As the conditions have to be perfect there are only a few areas within the UK that can support the breeding of a Rainbow Trout. The Rainbow will breed from January to April, The males will grow a pronounced hook on their bottom jaw and will darken in colour. When the female is ready to lay her eggs she will position herself to the bottom of the waters and will lay her 200 to 8000 eggs within the gravel, they will lay there until fertilised. Hatching times will vary depending on conditions and temperature, It can be from as little as 2 weeks and up to 4 months. It is not uncommon for river owners to introduce Rainbow into their stretch to increase the population.

Information

All information is from a variety of sources, if you think we have missed something? Email info@fishhere.co.uk with your update.

See you on the bank.

The Fishing UK Team!