Furry trout

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Furred Trout

The fur-bearing trout (or furry trout) is a fictional creature supposedly found in northern North America and Iceland. According to the stories, the trout evolved a thick coat of fur to maintain its body heat. Tales of furry fish date to the 17th-century. The earliest known American publication dates from a 1929 Montana Wildlife magazine article by J.H. Hicken. A taxidermy furry trout produced by Ross C. Jobe is part of the collections at the Royal Museum of Scotland: it is a trout with white rabbit fur attached.


Common Names

Icelandic: Lodsilungur

English: Fur-bearing Trout, Furry Trout


Characteristics

Common trout, but covered in soft white fur.


History

The basic claim is that the waters of lakes and rivers in the area are so cold that a species of trout has evolved which grows a thick coat of fur to maintain its body heat. Another origin story is that several bottles of hair growth tonic were spilled into the Arkansas River in Colorado in the 1870s, causing the fish to grow hair.

Supposedly, the fish are primarily found in the northern regions of North America, but particularly in Canada, Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana.


Present Status

No known specimens. A possible explanation for “furry fish” is infection by the "cotton mold,” Saprolegnia. It will sometimes infect fish, causing tufts of fur-like growth to appear on the body. A heavy infection will result in the death of the fish, and as the fungus continues to grow afterwards, dead fish that are largely covered in the white "fur" can occasionally be found washed ashore.

Alternatively, A real fish, Mirapinna esau, known as the "Hairy Fish", has hair-like outgrowths and wings. It was first discovered in the Azores in 1956.


References

"The Fur-Bearing Trout." The Fur-Bearing Trout. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 June 2014. http://www.museumofhoaxes.com/tall-tales/trout-fish.html

"Fur-Bearing Trout: From Tall Tales at Americanfolklore.net." Fur-Bearing Trout: From Tall Tales at Americanfolklore.net. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 June 2014. http://americanfolklore.net/folklore/2010/08/furbearing_trout.html

"Fur-bearing trout." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 24 May 2014. Web. 8 June 2014. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fur-bearing_trout

"Hicken's Fur-Bearing Trout." The Museum of Ridiculously Interesting Things. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 June 2014. http://ridiculouslyinteresting.com/2012/11/08/hickens-fur-bearing-trout/