Among the salmon fish family, there are species of Pacific salmon. Of which, Coho Salmon is one of them.
Today, you will find out more on:
- What Coho Salmon is
- Where to fish for Coho Salmon
- Fun facts about Coho Salmon
- If you can eat Coho Salmon
What is Coho Salmon?
Coho Salmon is one of five Pacific salmon species. It is anadromous fish often referred to as “silver salmon” or sometimes “silvers”.
They are a medium-size piece of salmon. Although it is regular in size, it offers double the amount of oil in comparison to a pink salmon . They aren’t the highest oil salmon in the ocean or lakes. Those are the sockeyes or king salmon. However, they do offer impressive oil benefits and are extremely rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
It is different from other species of salmon due to its light flavor and versatility. Many prefer the lighter taste of the Coho in comparison to a king salmon.
Like other species of salmon, the quality of the Coho will depend on the run. Thus, buyers and sellers recommend learning about what ‘run’ the fish you are sourcing is from before purchasing it. Coho is graded from 2 and upwards. The run and grade will dictate the characteristics of the Coho Salmon, which will indicate its quality.
Coho is typically sold fresh or frozen and in fillet form. Those that are frozen straight from the sea are typically better in quality.
The most distinguishable features are there external silver color, black tonuges, and white gums. Their color may vary depending on their age and sex. Some Coho Salmon are red. The back of any Coho is usually a dark green-blue color.
Where to fish for Coho Salmon
Coho can be found across the Pacific ocean. It is often found on both sides from Alaska to the Northwest area of North America. It can also be found in the oceans bordering Japan and Russia. Thus, Coho Salmon is widely available.
The general habitat of the Coho Salm Fish is in North America. Most Coho Salmon Fish will be found in the Pacific from Alaska to central Oregon. In their natural habitat, Coho Salmon will likely be of a higher grade.
Coho Salmon are extremely sensitive to their surroundings. Thus, they will unlikely be in waters where lots of anglers go fishing. Instead, they will be found in calm waters as any disturbances can put them off biting.
Small pools of water and shallow depths are where Coho Salmon most likely gather. When they swim, they will typically find deeper waters with temperatures ranging from 50 to 55 degrees Fahrenheit. In some cases, Coho Salmon will swim at depths of 300 meters to attain the perfect temperature. Thus, fishing in shallow waters of this temperature will offer you a greater chance of a catch.
Coho Salmon rarely live in the ocean. They prefer freshwater and great open lakes. They usually spawn in rivers and from there swim to streams and lakes around the Northwest regions of North America.
Any areas where there are small fish species such as herring, squid, and jellyfish are where Coho Salmon will thrive. When Cohos are young, they feed off of insects. However, when they mature they feed off of small fish. Thus, any areas where these species of fish asre abundant will most likely be where Coho adults swim.
Coho Salmon Fun Facts
There are plenty of fun facts to know about Coho Salmon . As well as being picky about their temperature, they are also picky about their habits. As they are anadromous fish, they prefer freshwater over the ocean. The young of a Coho will always hatch in freshwater. This is where they can find the best food and temperatures.
When a mother Coho has eggs to hide and protect, they will dig something known as “redds”. Redds are always dug in freshwater streams or lakes and are the best way for the mother to bury her clutch of eggs and protect them from predators.
After a young Coho is born, it is within its alevin stage. This simply means that its yolk sac is visible and is what the young lives off for the first few weeks, or until it runs empty. When a young Coho is in its alevin stage they are highly sensitive to pollutants in the water. When a young Coho becomes contaminated, they often do not survive.
When fisheries fish for Coho Salmon, they usually do so between July and December. They are the most crucial fish in Alaskan Fishery, so the competition is quite intense.
The reason for Coho Salmon being so popular is because they can be easy game to catch. They are easily lured when they are in their natural habitat. Seeing as they often swim in shallow waters, they can be easy to catch from a boat.
A Coho’s average weight and size is 24 inches long and 3.6 kg. The longest Coho to be found was 42.5 inches and the heaviest was recorded at 16 kg.
On average, a Coho Salmon will live around 3 years. The longest living Coho was 5 years old.
Another fun fact about Coho Salmon is that it is considered a staple for some peoples diets, especially indigenous tribes. They are considered to symbolize sustenance and life.
Top Coho Salmon Fishing Lures & Tips
For those who want to fish and lure Coho Salmon, you will want to know the best tips and tricks in the book. They are a popular fish to catch in the Northwest region of North America, so there is quite a lot of competition.
For fishermen in the United States, they can be farmed from California all the way up to Alaska. The best areas to go to find Cohos are freshwater lakes, streams, and rivers. To target them, it is best to go upstream as that is where they go to spawn.
Before heading out to fish, you will want to know where they swim depending on the season. Otherwise, you could head out and have no luck at all.
- Fall: during the fall months, Cohos typically swim upstream in freshwater to spawn.
- Winter: in winter time, Coho Salmon typically swim in rivers and streams. The best places to fish during this time is at the mouths of coastal rivers.
- Spring: in the spring time, Cohos will swim in certain pockets of lakes where the water doesn’t get too warm.
- Summer: when the waters warm up, Coho Salmon will swim deeper to find cooler waters. They will swim anywhere from 50 to 300 metres deep.
To catch Coho Salmon in any water, you will need a spinning gear setup. This will help you reel in the catch easily. A moderate to heavy rod with fast action will offer you the best catch results.
The rod should be able to cast at least 100 yards and withstand up to 15 pounds, as the weight and size of Coho Salmon can vary. To increase the likelihood of a catch, it is advised to increase your casting distance. Spooked Cohos will be difficult to catch, which is often the case when you use short rods.
The most common and effective bait for Coho Salmon is salmon eggs. The fresher the eggs, the more intense their smell will be, which will lure in the Cohos.
Other bait to use includes bright plugs and spoons. These will be irresistible to the fish and lure them in. Plugs are ideal if you are casting from a boat or close to the shore in water with little to no current.
Can you eat Coho Salmon?
Coho Salmon is a highly nutritious salmon specie, which is delicious and great with a variety of food. Thus, it is a popular choice of salmon for various meals. The fresher the salmon, the better the taste. If you can find freshly sourced Coho, you will be in for a treat.
Typically, a Coho that weighs around 3 ounces offers around 124 calories and 18 grams of protein. They are rich in health fats, more so than common salmon. However, king salmon is the specie that offers the most amount of fat and protein.
The most common way to prepare and cook Coho Salmon is to bake it. Baking salmon is quick and easy and it will not hinder its flavor. Or, you can grill it. Either way, the flavor will be distinctive, smoky, and delicious.
Coho is a popular, tasty, and great catch of fish. It is often found in freshwater areas around the Northwest American regions. If you can catch it yourself and eat it fresh, you will get the most out of its nutrition and amazing flavor.