Fun Brook Trout Facts For Kids | Kidadl


Fun Brook Trout Facts For Kids

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Are you interested to learn more about fishing? If you are acquainted with fishing in the US, you will definitely know about the brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis). They are one of the most colorful fishes that are found in the mountain streams or other water bodies in North America. However, their range has broadened since they were introduced in other countries around the world. These fish are also known as the eastern brook trout, the speckled trout, and the aurora trout. The fish prefer lower water temperatures, and they like water that is clean and well-oxygenated. In North America, the native range of these fishes can be from the far south in the Appalachian mountains to the far west as the US state of Minnesota. This fish is also the state fish of nine US states, including New Hampshire and New York. The adult females can lay up to 1,000 eggs during spawning, and the eggs hatch during early Spring. The fish is also popular for hunting and angling. Keep on reading to know more brook trout facts.

Also, check out the articles on flounder and skate fish to know more about water-dwelling animals.

Fun Brook Trout Facts For Kids

What do they prey on?

Insects, small fishes, mayflies, salamanders, worms, leeches

What do they eat?

Fishes and insects

Average litter size?

500-1000 eggs

How much do they weigh?

2.2-13.2 lb (1-6 kg)

How long are they?

15-20 in (38.1-50.8 cm)

How tall are they?


What do they look like?

Olive green to dark brown with reddish specks

Skin Type

Scaly skin

What were their main threats?


What is their conservation status?

Not Evaluated

Where you'll find them?

Lakes, Rivers, Marine Areas


Europe, South America, Australia, Asia, New Zealand, North America (native)









Brook Trout Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a brook trout?

The brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) is a type of fish from the Salmonidae family.

What class of animal does a brook trout belong to?

The brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) belongs to the Actinopterygii class and from the Salvelinus genus.

How many brook trout are there in the world?

As the brook trout species is abundantly found throughout the world, there is no way that the total brook trout populations can be analyzed.

Where does a brook trout live?

The brook trout is native to the Nearctic regions, but they have been introduced in several different areas around the world. They are abundantly found in North America, South America, New Zealand, Australia, Asia, and Europe. In North America, the geographical territory and native range of the brook trout are said to range from the Appalachian mountains in the far south to Hudson Bay in the north, and even towards far west streams such as that of Minnesota.

What is a brook trout's habitat?

The brook trout habitat facts include that they are found in different types of aquatic environments. It may include freshwater areas, lakes as well as in marine environments. By their name you can understand that the brook trout likes to stay in brooks, and they are commonly found at the mouth of rivers. They are also abundant in mountain streams and they do not like very warm temperatures. They prefer flowing, well-oxygenated and clear water for the perfect brook trout habitat. The brook trouts that live in marine environments have often migrated from more freshwater sources. The water temperatures need to be within 65.8 F (18.8 C). The brook trout do migrate when there is a need for it, especially when the temperature rises.

Who do brook trout live with?

The brook trout can be found living in groups, especially in shallow waters which makes them a perfect choice for fishing and angling. The brook trout is also artificially raised by people for human consumption.

How long does a brook trout live?

The average lifespan of a brook trout is anywhere from 8-16 years in the wild. Some sources even note that some fishes have managed to live until 24 years. However, most of them will end up being caught while fishing or angling.

How do they reproduce?

Brook trouts aren't monogamous, so they can breed with any member of their group. A female brook trout can produce anywhere between 500-1000 eggs during their spawning. The number of eggs for the fish may increase as they get more mature. The female brook trout lays eggs in a place called a redd. They may travel long streams to find a suitable area for spawning. The redd is a pit that can have a depth of up to 12 in (30.5 cm). So, only the strongest male brook trout can inseminate the eggs while spawning. The number of male brook trouts is often more than the number of female brook trouts present in the spawning area. The breeding or spawning season of the brook trout will depend on their geographical location.

The main spawning season takes place in the months of September and October. The eggs may take up to 95-100 days including the winter months. So, the young fry can be noticed in the early spring. After laying the eggs, the female will cover them with gravel to save them from predators. It takes the brook trout species two years to reach sexual maturity, but they can start spawning after a year of birth. Apart from mating with the brook trout, the species can also choose to mate with the tiger trout or the lake charr.

What is their conservation status?

According to the IUCN Red List, the conservation status of the brook trout is listed as Not Evaluated. So, you do not need to worry about the decrease in the population of the Eastern brook trout yet.

Brook Trout Fun Facts

What do brook trouts look like?

The brook trout is known for its olive green or almost brown or black skin. They also have white specks, and red specks with a blue halo are present all over their bodies. The different hued specks on their bodies give rise to the name speckled trout. Creamy lines can also be seen from the back to the head of the species, and this helps in a better definition of their body. Its body is laterally compressed, giving the brook trout a flat look. They have a forked caudal fin as well as an adipose fin. The body of a brook trout also contains 9-13 principle anal rays, 10-14 principle dorsal rays, 11-14 pectoral rays, and 8-10 pelvic rays. The brook trout's lower fins tend to be more colorful. The red or orange lower fins often have a white ending. The male brook trout that has reached breeding maturity also has a hook or a kype-like thing growing out of its lower jaw.

Brook trout facts are interesting for fish lovers.

How cute are they?

Well, a fish species cannot really be described as cute because they aren't that appealing. However, the spectacular color variation in the species does make them worthy of human appreciation.

How do they communicate?

The brook trout may communicate via tactile and chemical sensors, however, not much is known about their ways of communication.

How big is a brook trout?

The average length of the brook trout is around 15-20 in (38.1-50.8 cm). They aren't a very large species, but they are quite popular in the fishing circle. The maximum recorded length of a wild brook trout was 34.5 in (87.6 cm). The length and characteristics of the wild and native brook trout depend a lot on the streams and lakes that are a part of their habitat. They are about two or three times smaller than the lake trouts which have an average size of around 50 in (127 cm).

How fast can a brook trout swim?

Not much is known about the swimming speed of a brook trout. However, the species does prefer flowing streams and headwater streams in their native space which allows them to swim freely.

How much does a brook trout weigh?

The weight of a wild brook trout is around 2.2-13.2 lb (1-6 kg). They are one of the best fishes for hunting because of their small and appropriate size.

What are their male and female names of the species?

There is no distinct name for the male and female fishes of the brook trout species.

What would you call a baby brook trout?

A baby brook trout is known as a fry.

Would they make a good pet?

You can try to keep the brook trout as a pet if you get hold of it. Many people do raise the brook trout artificially for human consumption. However, it is best to let fish stay in their native streams rather than to catch them to take them out of their habitat. If you are going to keep the brook trout as a pet, make sure to research and read about their needs and wants. In their native range, the brook trout are known for living in lakes and streams. So, after you have got the trout, you will need to give it the best habitat along with the right water temperatures that shouldn't be too hot.

Are they dangerous?

No, brook trouts aren't dangerous in nature and they do not have any harmful tactics against their predators. Brook trouts are mostly eaten by humans and the native trout have been introduced to many water sources outside their native habitat. They are also caught in fishing and angling activities.

Would they make a good pet?

You can try to keep the Brook Trout as a pet if you get hold of it. Many people do raise the Brook Trout artificially for human consumption. However, it is best to let fish stay in their native streams rather than to catch them to take them out of their habitat. If you are going to keep the Brook Trout as a pet, make sure to research and read about their needs and wants. In their native range, the Brook Trout is known for living in lakes and streams. So, after you have got the trout, you will need to give it the best habitat along with the right water temperatures that shouldn't be too hot.

Did you know...

The brook trout fish lacks teeth on the roof of their mouth.

Water snakes, herons, and kingfishers are common predators of the species.

The largest brook trout found in a stream in New Hampshire was 25.5 in (64.8 cm) long and 9 lb (4.1 kg) in weight.

Brook Trout Fishing

Brook trouts are extensively fished for human consumption. They were taken from their native habitat in North America to be placed in several non-native places. In some places, the brook trout has also turned out to be an invasive species. They are also popular with anglers and fly fishermen who like to catch these fish. Once caught, the brook trout is cherished by people because of its good taste. Because of its abundance, the brook trout has been made the state fish of nine US states, including that of New Hampshire. Fishermen take catching the brook trout as a challenge as they can be hard to catch in the streams. Fly fishing is the most common technique to catch them as they can hide in the shallow water of the streams and lakes, especially between the boulders. Several types of bait can be used for the fish, including live insects, jigs, and fly worms.

Brook Trout vs. Brown Trout

The name brook trout may sound quite like a brown trout, but they are absolutely different fish. The first thing that you will notice is that the brook trout is much more colorful compared to the brown trout. The brook trout fish has specks all over its body. However, the brown trout may often lack specks in their tails as well as in their lower belly region. The brown trout fish is also of a more brownish color, whereas the brook trout has an olive green tone to its skin. Also, the spots are much lighter on a brook trout compared to those of a brown trout. The brown trout is quite picky about its habitat and streams as compared to the brook trout. One of the fun facts about brook trout fish is that they are currently placed in the char genus Salvelinus, so they aren't specifically trouts.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other fish including codfish, or fluke fish.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our butterfly fish coloring pages.

Written By
Moumita Dutta

Moumita is a multilingual content writer and editor. She has a PostGraduate Diploma in sports management, which enhanced her sports journalism skills, as well as a degree in journalism and mass communication. She's good at writing about sports and sporting heroes. Moumita has worked with many soccer teams and produced match reports, and sports is her primary passion.

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