The Steelhead Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), or Trucha arcoíris anádroma in Spanish, is a unique form of rainbow trout. Like salmon, they spend most of their adult lives in the Pacific Ocean but return to the site of their birth to spawn in freshwater rivers and streams.
Southern California steelhead have adapted to seasonally dry streams in southern California’s dry climate, but water diversions, dams, and urban development including livestock grazing have severely impacted native southern California steelhead runs. If these streams can recover and are not too warm, the Steelhead Trout can recover in greater numbers.
To learn more about Steelhead Trout in California or to get involved in your area, please visit California Trout: Fish, Water, People.
PHOTO CREDIT: © Tim Fitzharris / Minden Pictures / Corbis