The Masu Salmon has the same color as other Pacific salmon when it is in the ocean.

Cherry Name Confusion

From the head to the tale, the Masu Salmon is silver in color and does not have any vertical strips that are visible. However, this all changes when it enters its spawning stage.

The Cherry Salmon, or Cherry trout, is often the name given to the freshwater version of the Masu Salmon, which is a sub species and also referred to as a Masu Salmon or trout.

The sub species, formosan salmon, is characterized by the vertical stripes all year round whereas the Masu salmon has a slier colour when it is in the ocean and only changes when it comes inland to spawn.

It is the sub species that keep the stripes on their sides and are more colorful all year round, but developing the red stripes in the spring when they spawn. Well, when the mature formosan salmon spawn.

Spawning Color Change

The males grow a small hump, rise and curve jaw, the teeth grow. At the time of maturing fish strips on the sides of the body are bright red with a crimson hue. On the abdomen, they merge into a common longitudinal strips, colored lighter.

The back is dark brownish, fins darken in their color appears red. Tips of dorsal, anal and the lower edge of caudal fins are white. On the back and fins marked oval spots.

Externally, the Masu Salmon resembles the Pink Salmon, but differs from other salmon species by presence on its body sides of transversal stripes. In English this species is also called “cherry salmon”. This name comes from the cherry blossoms that are in full bloom when the Masu Salmon is spawning.

Masu Salmon Size

Masu Salmon average around 4.4 to 5.5 lbs/2 to 2.5 kg and are about 19.7 inches/50 cm in length. The largest ever caught was weighed in at 20 pounds/9 kilograms and reach a length of 28 inches/71 cm.