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Utah fish

Cutthroat Trout

Rainbow Trout

Images from Utah Division of Wildlife Resources http://www.wildlife.utah.gov/

The Bonneville cutthroat trout is Utah's state fish. They are our state symbol because they are native to Utah. This means they were here before the first people.

The Native Americans and pioneers used these fish as a source of food. For a time, the rainbow trout was Utah's state fish. Some people introduced, or brought, them to Utah from another place. Since the Bonneville cutthroat was here first, the legislature decided to give it the honor of being the state fish of Utah.

Bonneville cutthroat get their name from the patch of color on their throat. They are found in lakes, and eat small flies and other insects from the water's surface. Larger cutthroats sometimes eat other fish. They spawn (lay eggs) in the springtime near the mouths of streams. The eggs hatch in 24 - 25 days. The record for the largest cutthroat caught in Utah is 26 lb. 12 oz. It was caught in 1930, on Strawberry Reservoir by Mrs. E. Smith. That's right - it was really caught by a woman!

Try it!

Look up information about another Utah fish. Look in books or the Internet. Draw a picture of the fish and label it. (Don’t forget to draw all of the fins and where the gills are found.) Write down some facts about it.

  1. What does it look like?
  2. Does it live in cold or warm water lakes?
  3. What does it eat? Is its food on the bottom or surface of the water?
  4. Where and when does it spawn? How long is the incubation (amount of time for the eggs to hatch)?
  5. How big do they get?

Help save our fish!

Some fish, especially trout, catch a disease called Whirling Disease. This disease causes the fish to grow with curved backbones, and occasionally causes them to die. Help prevent the spread of this disease! Here's how:

  • Never carry live fish from one body of water to another body of water.
  • Dispose of fish insides properly. Don't throw them into the water or put them in a disposal.
  • Clean and rinse your fishing gear and shoes after fishing in a stream or lake before you go to another body of water.

Download the plug-ins: Get Adobe Acrobat Reader , and Get Quicktime Player. (The QuickTime plug-in is needed to play sounds and movies correctly.)

Want to share photos of you or your friends doing this activity? Send it in an e-mail with the following information:

  1. The title of the activity
  2. The URL (Internet address)
  3. Your name.

Remember that no pictures can be used that show student faces or student names on it. 

Teachers should view the Teacher Site Map to relate Sci-ber text and the USOE 4th grade science core.


Updated October 24, 2008 by: Glen Westbroek

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