The Kokanee Salmon is a landlocked sockeye salmon (also known as red salmon).
Most anglers in the northeast have never heard of Kokanee salmon. Which is understandable since there are so few fisheries
for them here. The nearest locations to target this species from my home state of MA (that I know of) are in CT, NY and NC.
Targeting them requires some road travel.
For some anglers it would probably not be worth it. The fish are small and do not attain large sizes. However if your
a salmon fanatic looking to hook something a little different and you can overlook their small dainty size. Than go for it
but it won't come easy.
After chasing these fish around a handful of times in CT. I find them to be extremely hard to catch. Because they are
primarily plankton eaters can probably explain why. CT does not produce very large kokes. In fact the state record is only
2 lb. 12 oz., caught by David Randolph at Highland Pond. Not exactly tempting is it. However if your into a challenge you'll
find it with these silver rockets.
No one really knows the origins of how this fish got introduced into CT. Rumor has it that a wealthy man that lived on
a lake had illegally had a private hatchery stock salmon into his lake but what he thought he was getting, landlocked salmon.
As those found in Maine & New Hampshire wound up being kokanee. I cannot confirm if this rumor is true but it makes for
an interesting tale.
Kokanee have very soft mouths in which the hook can easily be ripped out of, so playing and landing them will have to
be done in a delicate manner. I plan on maybe making another pain staking day trip or two for them in 2008, only to try some
new techniques and to attempt to get some real numbers next time.
If you decide to pursue them good luck and be ready to work for them.