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Landlocked Salmon: 3 Facts About Maine's Official State Fish

By    |   Wednesday, 02 Mar 2016 07:25 PM

The landlocked salmon is one of Maine's most highly prized and sought-after game fish. It's also the official fish of the Pine Tree State. It's a favorite of sportsmen and chefs, and writers have waxed poetic about it.

Here are three facts about Maine's official state fish that may make you proud to angle for it.

1. It's Maine's Prize Catch

The state of Maine adopted landlocked salmon (salmo salar Sebago) as its official state fish in 1969, according to Netstate. It is a subspecies of Atlantic salmon, but it lives in lakes and reaches a maximum weight of about 35 pounds. Edward Balkely still holds the record for catching a trophy fish with his 22-pound, 8-ounce landlocked salmon caught in Sebago Lake in 1907, according to LandBigFish.com.

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2. Authors Have Opined About It

"The salmon is said to be as old as time and to know all the past and future," author Catherine Schmitt wrote in promoting her book, "The President's Salmon: Restoring the King of Fish and Its Home Waters."

The landlocked salmon's ability to survive is part of what makes it a prize. In his blog on Rod+Reel, fisherman Ted Williams reminisced about possibly the first record of a Sebago Lake landlocked salmon: the 1825 diary entry of novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne. "On the way home from Frye's Island, Mr. Ring caught a black-spotted trout that was almost a whale," Hawthorne wrote. "It weighed, before it was cut open, 18 and one-half pounds."

3. It's the Stuff of Bucket Lists

In the book "50 Places to Fly Fish Before You Die," author Chris Santella recommended the West Branch of the Penobscot River in early fall for fishing the landlocked salmon. "Pristine north woods beauty and enough good water to provide a degree of solitude for those willing to seek it make the West Branch of the Penobscot worth a visit anytime during the fishing season," Santella wrote.

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The landlocked salmon is one of Maine's most highly prized and sought-after game fish. It's also the official fish of the Pine Tree State. It's a favorite of sportsmen and chefs, and writers have waxed poetic about it.
landlocked salmon, facts, Maine, state fish
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2016-25-02
Wednesday, 02 Mar 2016 07:25 PM
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