Utah's Plants and Animals - Utah Fish

Cutthroat Trout

Rainbow Trout

Images from Utah Division of Wildlife Resources

If you have ever gone fishing, you might have caught a trout. Did you eat it or release it?

The Bonneville cutthroat trout is Utah's state fish. They are our state symbol because they are native to Utah. This means that 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 usually found in lakes and eat small flies and other insects. The record for the largest cutthroat caught in Utah is 26 lb. 12 oz. caught in 1930 on Strawberry Reservoir by Mrs. E. Smith.

Try it!

Look up information about another Utah fish from 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. Does it live in cold or warm water lakes?
  2. What does it eat?
  3. What does it look like?
  4. How big do they get?

Help save our fish!

Some fish, especially trout, can catch a disease called Whirling Disease. This disease causes the fish to grow with curved backbones and can cause them to die. You can 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.
utah state board of education This Sci-ber Text was developed by the Utah State Board of Education and Utah educators.