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Coho Salmon fish identification, its habitats, characteristics, fishing methods.

The Coho salmon occur in the ocean or in lakes. After spawning adults return to the rivers where they were born. The young fish emerge in springtime and they usually stay in fresh water for 1 - 2 years and later they migrate at night to freshwater lakes or to the sea. The fish that stay more than 2 years in fresh water and become sexually ripe without ever going to sea, are called residuals, they never spawn. Young fish in lakes and rivers eat mainly insects; they stay almost entirely in deep parts of the river and soon become strongly territorial. Upon reaching the sea, the smolts remain close to the coast for a certain time, eating planktonic crustaceans. As they grow, they migrate farther out into the sea and hunt larger organisms such as jellyfish, squids and fishes. Coho salmon is traded as fresh fish, dried or salted, smoked, canned, preserved and frozen; it could be eaten steamed, grilled, broiled, cooked in the microwave and baked.

Coho Salmon Fishing The Coho salmon, Oncorhynchus kisutch (from Russian КИЖУЧ), also known as Silver salmon or Silvers, is a species of anadromous fish in the salmon family. They are found in coastal waters of Alaska from Southeast to Point Hope on the Chukchi Sea and in the Yukon River to the Alaska-Yukon border.
    In North Pacific they distributed from Anadyr River in Siberia south towards Hokkaido Island, Japan, and southwards to Chamalu Bay in Baja California, Mexico.
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Description


They have 9 13 dorsal soft rays, 12 17 anal soft rays. Coho salmon characterized by the presence of small black spots on the back and on the upper lobe of the caudal fin, and by the lack of dark pigment along the gum line of the lower jaw. The gill rakers are rough and widely spaced; the lateral line is nearly straight. The adipose fin is slender; the pelvic fins have an axillary extension. Coho Salmon Identification

    Fish in salt water or newly arrived in fresh water are dark metallic blue or greenish on the back and upper sides, a bright silver color on middle and lower sides, and white below. Small black spots appear on their neck and back, with some spots on the dorsal fin, and across the upper tail lobe.
Coho Salmon Fishing During the spawning season fish turn from bright silver dark to bright green on head and back, bright red on the sides and often dark on the belly. Females are less brightly colored than males. During their spawning phase, the jaws and teeth of the coho become hooked. Some fish may appear darker, as a bronze, greenish brown, or even black. 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 coho salmon have a pronounced red skin color with darker backs and average 28 inches in length and 7 to 11 pounds in weight, but could weight up to 36 pounds.
    Mature females may be darker than males, with both develop a hooked snout, prolonged teeth, and a slight humped back. Spawning fish in inland rivers are dark with reddish-maroon coloration on the sides. The females retain their normal shape and are generally not as colorful.
    They can be distinguished from Chinook Salmon by the lack of black spots on the lower lobe of the tail and gray gums in the lower jaw, that has lighter pigment than does the Chinook salmon. Average silvers range from 5 to 10 pounds, with big fish at 15 pounds in most places, the maximus is 30 lbs.

Habitats

    Some Coho migrate only a short distance into good feeding areas, and stay there; others travel extensively. Coho salmon from California to British Columbia tend to travel north and spend the summer along the central Alaskan coast. Most Alaskan fish travel a counter clockwise path following the currents in the north Pacific Ocean. Coho salmon smolts tend to stay close to shore at first, feeding on plankton. As they grow larger, they move farther out into the ocean and switch to a diet of small fish.
    Coho salmon utilize freshwater, nearshore and offshore environments during its lifecycles. Coho salmon spawn in the same environment as Chinook Salmon; however, coho prefer lower stream velocity, shallower water and smaller gravel. Most coho fry stay in the stream for over a year feeding on aquatic insects, zooplankton and small fish. Adequate stream cover is important to fry survival, as is high dissolved oxygen levels.Mortality is especially high during freshwater lifestages, often a result of poor forest and agricultural management practices that lead to siltation, which may ruin spawning beds or smother the eggs. Migrating coho salmon also face physical obstacles and high water temperatures resulting from dams, inadequate water flows due to diversions for irrigation and impoundment of water for power generation. Once reaching the estuaries, coho salmon fall prey to a number of other species and may be impacted by human changes, such as shoreline development, residential drainage and the filling of marine wetlands. The time spent in this habitat is critical to the development of the species and their ability to survive in the offshore environment.
    Coho spend approximately the first half of their life cycle rearing and feeding in streams and small freshwater tributaries. Spawning habitat is small streams with stable gravel substrates. The remainder of the life cycle is spent foraging in estuarine and marine waters of the Pacific Ocean.
    As the time for migration to the sea approaches, juvenile coho salmon lose their parr marks, a pattern of vertical bars and spots useful for camouflage, and gain the dark back and light belly coloration used by fish living in open water. Their gills and kidneys also begin to change at this time so that they can process salt water. In their freshwater stages, coho feed on plankton and insects, and switch to a diet of small fishes as adults in the ocean.
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Spawning

    Coho salmon spawn in coastal streams from Northern Japan to the Anadyr River in Siberia and from Monterey Bay in California and Point Hope in Alaska. This species can also be found in the ocean from Baja, California, to the Bering Sea in Alaska. Major U.S. spawning grounds are in Alaska, Washington and Oregon. Coho salmon adults migrate from a marine environment into freshwater streams and rivers of their birth in order to mate. Adults return to their stream of origin to spawn only once and then die, usually at around 3 years old. Some precocious males known as "jacks" return as two-year-old spawners. Spawning males develop a strongly hooked snout and large teeth.
    Spawning occurs from November to January in small streams with stable gravel substrates, with the eggs hatching the following spring. Moving seaward the following spring, most cohos return to spawn when they are 3 years old. The female digs a shallow dish nest in the gravel by lying on her side against the bottom and swimming forward energetically. Her body and fins flush out the stones. One or several males join her in the actual spawning. Afterward, the adults abandon the nest (redd). The eggs fall into the spaces between the gravel. They may be covered slightly with more gravel by the female before she leaves. Females prepare several redds where the eggs will remain until they hatch. spawning generally occurs at night. The female deposits 2,400 to 4,500 eggs approximately 16-21 mm in diameter. As the eggs are deposited, they are fertilized with sperm by the male. Coho Salmon Spawning Run

Coho Salmon Larvae     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 12 weeks. The alevins 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 sediment contaminants. When the yolk sac is completely resorbed by the alevin it will swim up out of the redd.

    Coho fry remain in streams for over a year. Juveniles are brightly painted. The general tone of the body is olive, dark back and abdomen with an orange tint. On their sides there are clearly visible 8 - 12 dark transverse spots, over which the apparent small oval or triangular spots. When the number of cross-bands increased to 12-14, the fins are became brighter on the sides and belly became silvery. Fry spend 2-3 years living in the river, feeding on aerial insects, their larvae, eggs of other salmonids and grow to 12 - 14 cm. Coho Salmon Fry

Coho Salmon Smolt
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Young coho often spending the first winter in off-channel sloughs, before undergoing a transformation to the smolt life-stage. Smolts are generally 100-150 mm and their parr marks are faded and the silver scales characteristic of the adult life-stage start to dominate. Smolts migrate to the ocean in late March through July. Some fish leave fresh water in the spring, spend summer in brackish estuarine ponds and then migrate back into fresh water in the fall. Coho salmon live in the salt water for 1 to 3 years before returning to spawn.


Fishing Methods


    Coho salmon is a game fish and provides fine sport in fresh and salt water from July to December, especially with light fishing tackle. It is one of the most popular sport fish in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. the large number of coastal streams it ascends during its spawning runs. Its habit of schooling in relatively shallow water, and often near beaches, makes it accessible to anglers on the banks as well as in boats. The best time for fishing a Coho salmon is in August.
    Also one of the best spot to fish for Coho is the Russian River where is flows into the Kenai. The Kenai River is glacier fed and a cloudy green color, but in the stream you can actually see the fish, especially with Polarized Sunglasses and you can make your casts to specific fish.
    When fishing for Coho in the Kenai River, with its powerful flow of water, minimum 20 lbs line on a medium to medium-heavy action rod is a good choice. In the smaller streams, 8 to 10 foot medium action rod with 12 pound line.
    One of the more powerful and energetic species among salmon is silver salmon. They are more active, strong and have the ability to fight in acrobatic ways. The silver salmon are famous for their acrobatic, aggressive and full of energetic fights. They fight back with their anglers reel for reel and can take off on sizzling runs. The angler needs to be well equipped when go for silver salmon fishing. The light fishing tackles have the best features and perfect for harvesting the silver salmon. You have required the rod which must be flexible to handle the freaking aer jumping of silver salmon. You need no less than 15 pounds fishing line as well as a kind of rod and reel which can hold this weight too. catching for these types of salmon using very flexible and light Casting Rods and Surf Rods can be a great challenge and dare for the salmon anglers.
    The rainy weather is the best for silver salmon fishing. Coho salmon is more active in rain or about to rain. You can enjoy silver salmon fishing from boat or from a bank and get pleasure of this sport fishing. Herring is the preferred bait for salt water silvers, salmon roe is great for freshwater. Spin-N-Glo on a two-hook leader, with salmon roe is a good method. Use enough weight to hold the rig at the bottom, which is where the fish are. Throw out in front of you and let the current take it downstream until it rests where you want it to. The whole idea is to have this ball of salmon eggs suspended or floating downstream right in front of or into oncoming or resting salmon.
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