Mexican Golden Trout, May 2011, Fish of the Month!
Mexican Golden Trout
Several subspecies bear the local names of the rivers they inhabit.
8 to 10 inches
Distinguishing Field Marks:
Overall body shape and fin placement nearly identical to Rainbow trout Parr marks usually remain distinct throughout the fish's life.
North American Range:
Map to the right shows approximate range in North America.
Immature and adult aquatic insects and other small invertebrates.
Fly Fishing for Mexican Golden Trout:
Should you decide that the risks are worth taking, fly fishing for Mexican Golden trout will require your smallest outfits. Seven to eight foot two to four weights are appropriate. Flies will be match-the-hatch nymphs and dries in small sizes.
The range map for this species of small trout tells most of its story. With its habitat limited to higher altitude regions of northwestern Mexico, this fish will go unnoticed by all but locals and the very curious and industrious visiting angler. Just getting to these lovely trout is an undertaking. Transportation within its range is at best basic, and, as the national news will tell us, Mexico is not a particularly safe place to travel these days. So, you might well ask, "Why even include the Mexican Golden trout here?" The answer to that is that it, like several other American trout and char species, is unusual and interesting as an example of the specialization that is their hallmark.
This trout is also a sad example of the negative effects of habitat abuse and destruction. The primary "use" for the Mexican Golden trout is as food by the local human populations. Sanitation in the region this fish inhabits is minimal and so, much of its home water is polluted with residential sewage and trash. What happens now in Mexican Golden trout water is similar to what happened to so many North American trout waters in the 19th and early 20th centuries; they were used as convenient industrial and residential sewers, the result of which we all now understand. Many of our formerly heavily polluted waters have been restored to a semblance of their former purity. Of course, these restoration efforts have required literally billions of dollars and man/hours to realize. Sad to think that in this moderately environmentally enlightened era, there are still places where trout are considered just another meal and their habitats trash receptacles……