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Letort colors

Joined:
2013/3/28 20:10
From Stroudsburg (Poconos)
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I finally fished the Letort on Monday of this week as I was driving through Carlisle on my way to Ft. Ritchie, MD for work. I managed one nice brown dead drifting a WB through one of the many slow moving channels. The colors on this brown are so much more vivid than the wild browns in the Pocono's I regularly catch. I've never caught a brown with that much red on its tail. Does the Letort contain a different strain of brown trout or is this a common occurence with limestone streams? I primarily only fish freestoners and tailwaters.

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Posted on: 1/28 20:45


Re: Letort colors
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The Letort certainly has a strong influence the Lock Leven strain of brown trout. The sparce black spot patterns reveal the strongest genetic lineage. The infusion of reds into the flanks and fins is both seasonal and environment driven. High protein forage (scuds and sowbugs) combined with the current post spawn condition pushes those reds into the tail and fins.

I find this especially true on limestoners but freestoners also see this coloration phenomenon. Especially with male brown trout. It is my observation that brown trout with fewer red spots see more reds and oranges infused into the flanks and fins during the spawn. Trout without strong lateral line spots (including stocked brown trout) even experience the color change in the black spots. I believe the carotenoid is pushed into the flesh with no target (red spots) and bleeds or is misdirected to black spots, flanks and fins. Just my hunch.

Make no mistake about it, the fall and this time of year are the most colorful for brown trout.

Posted on: 1/28 21:33

Edited by Maurice on 2014/1/29 8:45:53
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Re: Letort colors
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Quote:

Millsertime wrote:
Does the Letort contain a different strain of brown trout or is this a common occurence with limestone streams?


It's a common occurrence.

There's a widespread belief that Letort fish are genetically unique and thus have few but large spots. While some Letort browns do indeed seem to have fewer spots, esp in the upper reaches of the stream, I'm personally skeptical of the idea that these are truly unique fish. The trout in your pic could just have easily come from Penns Creek or Valley Creek (or wherever) as the red caudal edges and other colors are common in wild browns across PA.

Regardless of appearance.....Congrats on catching your first Letort trout - it's a milestone for any PA FFer.

Posted on: 1/28 22:32


Re: Letort colors

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2006/9/13 10:18
From LV
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I agree that the Lock Leven Browns have influenced the Letort population, but Lock Leven Browns don't usually have anyred, they are very silvery with large black spots. However, I don't know how they change when they are in spawning colors.

http://www.flyfishing.co.uk/photo-gal ... rown-trout-4lb-12-oz.html

Posted on: 1/28 22:41
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It's time to stop stocking all wild trout streams no matter what Classification they are, and time to eradicate brown trout in some of our limestone streams and re-establish brookies in them.


Re: Letort colors

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2013/2/16 0:51
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I'm not really up on my history of brown trout strains in PA, but even if they originally were all the same strain in a given body of water, over time variations in color and spot pattern will develop. I can think of many streams where some browns are Letort-esque and some are heavily spotted. Spring Creek, Valley Cr, and Thompson Run come to mind as limestoners where I've noticed this, but there are a few freestone streams in Chester county (and elsewhere I'm sure) that have great variety of patterns too.

Awesome fish btw. I have to get to the Letort soon!

Posted on: 1/28 23:19


Re: Letort colors

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2012/10/24 19:22
From Da 'Berg, PA
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It's a loch leven brown OR a German brown. They can't be both.


Posted on: 1/29 8:20
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Re: Letort colors
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Quote:

geebee wrote:
It's a loch leven brown OR a German brown. They can't be both.



Touche! Nice catch.

Posted on: 1/29 8:45
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Re: Letort colors
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Do you mean these two strains are incapable of breeding with one another? That's a surprise.

Posted on: 1/29 8:45
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Re: Letort colors

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I dunno, I don't think there is anything genetically 'unique' about the browns in the Letort. I've caught plenty that are sparsely spotted and others with dense spots...pretty much the same as any other stream that holds wild browns. I could show you pictures that you'd automatically think were 'Letort browns' when in fact they were caught out of Penns, the Little J, BFC....the red coloring schemes seem to me to be seasonally influenced along with diet affected.

Congrats tot he OP though, sure is a purty fish regardless.

Posted on: 1/29 8:45


Re: Letort colors
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Quote:

JackM wrote:
Do you mean these two strains are incapable of breeding with one another? That's a surprise.


No he means the way I phrased it it suggested the Lock Leven strain was from Germany. My intent was as you suggest that they do breed with one another and the results while mixed demonstrate a strong influence of loch leven browns.

Posted on: 1/29 8:50
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Don't hit me with them negative waves so early in the morning. Think the bridge will be there and it will be there. It's a mother, beautiful bridge, and it's gonna be there. Ok?


Re: Letort colors
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I see a greater influence of the Scotch strain among Letort Browns, but my experience is limited.

Posted on: 1/29 8:52
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Re: Letort colors

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Many freestone streams have very colorful wild browns. The most colorful wild browns I have seen were from freestone streams, not limestoners.

It is very common for trout fishermen to catch these colorful freestone wild brown trout and not realize that they are brown trout, but mistake them for brook trout.

Posted on: 1/29 9:15


Re: Letort colors

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2009/2/19 19:59
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Quote:

troutbert wrote:
Many freestone streams have very colorful wild browns. The most colorful wild browns I have seen were from freestone streams, not limestoners.

Couldn't agree more.

Posted on: 1/29 10:18
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Re: Letort colors
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Freestone browns seem to be darker overall, hence a more stark contrast with the "colors." I have caught very colorful brown trout in Spring, Spruce, and Penns, all considered limestoners.

Posted on: 1/29 10:33
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Re: Letort colors

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Quote:

JackM wrote:
I see a greater influence of the Scotch strain among Letort Browns, but my experience is limited.


you mean Scots - Scotch is a drink....

as we know, brownies change according to environment but i think a general rule of thumb is -

silvery, dark back, big tail, few red spots, larger dark spots = Loch Leven

bronzey (?), lighter back, smaller tail, more red spots = German

this is the best contrasting pics i cound find from Google UK :

loch leven :

Click to see original Image in a new window


German :

Click to see original Image in a new window


the above pic is from cornell, so they show the anal fin with a white edge, but that's not on German browns.

obviously as you pointed out before, these have been interbred over here for a hundred years or so, so its not an exact science in the US - for a start US browns have white edges to their fins and European browns don't, so somewhere somehow a bit of char got in there....

have a gander here for pics of actual Loch Leven Brown trout caught on Loch Leven :

https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&si ... mg..2.19.1167.lXe7S7gmQkU

cheers

Mark.

Posted on: 1/29 11:14



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