FRESHWATER FISH, an East Falkland river


  • trout

Brown Trout Salmo trutta

Local names: Rainbow trout, sea trout
The Brown Trout or ‘Rainbow’ Trout was introduced into the Falklands where it has flourished probably at the expense of the smaller local ‘zebra’ trout, having spread naturally through many of the island’s rivers and waterways. It is absent from most of the Lafonia section of East Falklands nor is it in the southern section of West Falklands waterways that run into Port Philomel. On the West Chartres River and Warrah River are both excellent places to catch brown/ sea trout as is the San Carlos River and Murrell River on the East. The trout fishing season runs from 1st September to the 30th April.


  • mullet

'Mullet' Eleginops maclovinus

Although essentially a marine fish mullet can survive and adapt to freshwater if trapped. This has occurred in Loch head Pond on East Falklands. Mullet are Browny- grey with a lighter belly. They can grow to around 60 cm (24inches). They favour muddy creeks and estuaries but are common all around Falkland Islands coasts and are easily caught on lines baited with a piece of meat or a spinner.


  • zebra

Falkland 'Zebra' Trout Aplochiton zebra

Falkland trout are small and delicate, growing to around 23cm, and are without scales. Adults have varying distinctive reddish brown vertical bars on sides and back. They have large eyes and a large mouth with fang-like teeth. These fish are found in rivers and streams but also migrate to and from the sea to coastal waters. They are an important food for Rolland's and Silvery grebes. The introduction and preying on by the Brown Trout Salmo trutta has greatly reduced Falkland trout. At worst it may be that they will survive against Brown Trout only in land-locked ponds and streams where Salmo trutta cannot live. Found also in neighbouring Patagonia.


  • minnow

Falklands Minnow Galaxias maculatus

An indigenous freshwater species found in rivers, streams and some ponds and lakes in the Falklands. Minnows are generally about 70-80 mm but can grow to 120 mm. They are small and slender with no adipose dorsal fin and a markedly forked tail. Colours vary according to situation. In peaty waters they may be browny-olive, and in clear water they may be pale cream to grey or even seem transparent.



Sources include:Falkland Islands State of the Environment Report 2008 Otley H, Munro G, Clausen A, Ingham B.  Wildlife of the Falkland Islands amd South Georgia - Ian J Strange , Falkland Islands Freshwater Fishes- R. M. McDowall, R.M. Allibone & W. L. Chadderton
Photographic credits: Robert Maddocks
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