Lahontan Cutthroat Trout

Scientific Name:

Oncorhynchus clarkii henshawi

Type:

Fish

Habitat:

Lakes, rivers, and streams with cool, well-oxygenated water and areas with rocky substrate, vegetation cover, riffles, and pools

Range:

The Lahontan Basin in northern Nevada

Status:

Threatened under the Endangered Species Act

This species is

NATIVE

to the Truckee Meadows.

Identification:

Lahontan cutthroat trout are large fish, growing up to 4 feet in length. Their bodies are olive-colored with small, black spots and a red patch under the jaws. A pink stripe appears on the sides of the fish during breeding season.

Fast Facts:

  • The fish was named “cutthroat” for the red-colored patch underneath its jaw.

  • The Lahontan cutthroat trout population in Lake Tahoe, Truckee River, and Pyramid Lake was extirpated in the 1940s due to overfishing and water diversions. The species was reintroduced from other populations, and the population is still supported by hatchery stocking efforts.

  • Habitat loss, hybridization with other trout species, and competition with non-native species have caused Lahontan cutthroat trout populations to diminish and for it to be listed as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

Sources:

Contributor(s):

Sarah Epstein (research & content)

Alex Shahbazi (edits & page design)

Last Updated:

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