Golden Rainbow Trout-
The golden rainbow trout is a gold-orange rainbow trout raised under artificial fish culture conditions and stocked as a novelty for angling sport. The golden rainbow was developed from one fish, a single female trout with a genetic mutation that gave her a mixed golden and normal rainbow trout coloration. She was found in the West Virginia hatchery system in 1954. Through selective breeding with regularly marked rainbow trout, an all-gold, golden rainbow trout was developed. In 1963, this fish strain was popularized as the “West Virginia Centennial Golden Trout.” Pennsylvania and other states hybridized the pure strain of West Virginia golden trout with normal rainbows and produced palomino trout, which were true genetic palominos. Palomino trout were first stocked in Pennsylvania in 1967. Since then, the genetic strain in Pennsylvania has weakened, but in recent years the hybrid was selectively bred back closer to the stronger, better-colored golden rainbow trout. Although palominos were stocked as both average-sized and large trout, today’s golden rainbow is raised only to trophy size for anglers and stocked throughout the state.
The golden rainbow trout is a different species than the golden trout (Oncorhynchus aguabonita) of some California streams. In fish hatcheries, the rainbow trout has occasionally produced other unusual genetic mutations, such as the blue rainbow trout, whose body color is sky-blue.
The gold color mutation of the Rainbow trout, is also known as a Palomino, Banana Trout, or Yellow Rainbow. There is also a true albino Rainbow that is stocked frequently in Utah. They have the red eyes and are easy to distinguish.
Using the term "Golden Rainbow", even though it is correct, is confusing because it is too close to the name of the California Goldens which is a separate species.