Taimen: "Terror Trout"

January 4, 2010 By: Marshall Cutchin

The National Geographic headline writers may have gone a bit overboard with their description of the Hucho taimen (most other trout can also be “cannibals”), but calling attention to the possibility of losing another large trout species is never a bad thing. Question is, does it take a cultural prohibition against eating fish — as exists in Mongolia — to prevent extermination?

“The taimen, the only fish species from the salmon and trout family large enough to qualify as a megafish, has already been harvested to the brink of extinction in neighboring China. Its numbers are also shrinking rapidly in Russia. Mongolia’s pristine Eg-Uur river basin now remains one of the last strongholds of healthy taimen populations.”