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Thread: difference between salmon

  1. #1
    Member anticipation's Avatar
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    Default difference between salmon

    now i feel like an idiot asking this but i havnt targeted many species of salmon as my father only ever took me pink salmon fishing

    i am well aware of what pinks look like, but i am not positive how to tell the difference between the other species when they are still ocean bright

    i hear kings have black gums so thats a sure thing, and i hear chums have bars on thier sides? is this always or only after they change

    and what are the differences between silver and red salmon?

  2. #2
    Member stevelyn's Avatar
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    Kings will also have spots on their backs and tails.

    The chums will have faint bars on their sides, but you have to step back away from them and look from a couple of different angles to pick up on them. A better way to tell an ocean bright chum up close is to look at the tail fin. There will be silver rays spreading out on the tail fin itself.

    Reds have a black/blue back, no spots, no markings on tail and no black gumline.

    Silvers have black/grey backs and their tails fade into silver, not divided in rays like chums.

    Just make sure that you keep your species separate if you jar or can them.
    Now what ?

  3. #3
    Member anticipation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevelyn View Post

    Just make sure that you keep your species separate if you jar or can them.
    thank you for your answers why is this so important? simply for taste or is there some other reason

  4. #4

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    They turn toxic if you mix red and king salmon in the same jar.

    Just kidding... its mainly for taste reasons. The different types of salmon taste different and have different fat content and attributes when canned or jarred.
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  5. #5
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    Default Tails

    Silvers have spots on their backs too. They way I can always tell is the tail. Each tail is distinct.

    Pinks: Overall pinks are obvious.

    Kings: Spots all over the tail, can be covered in silver.

    Cohos: Thick base to the tail, large silver block or heavy streaks.

    Chums: Light silver streaks, narrow base and pointy fork.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

  6. #6
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    Sockeye: Not silver on tail, thicker and less pointy than a chum.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

  7. #7
    Member oldmil007's Avatar
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    Thanks AKboater,

    Rookie here myself. This is good stuff to help with the identification issue.

    - Jay

  8. #8
    Member bkbaker's Avatar
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    When your a pro you can see the dogs, silvers and reds in their eyes while there still in the water.

  9. #9
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    Very nice post and thanks to AKBoater for the excellent pictures and descriptions. This is exactly what a forum should be like.

  10. #10

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    salmonid.jpg Picture worth a 1000 wods, it's on the Ak Fish & Game web site, sure saves the argument part tho

  11. #11

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    F&G also has a handout (might be available as a PDF online) that gives more identification markers such as the number of gill rakers each species has. It is very good. But the one in the regs book that Alaskapiranha posted is a good quick guide.
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