Trout Spawning in Þingvellir Draws Hundreds

Brown trout Þingvellir

A crowd of 500 gathered at Þingvellir National Park last weekend to watch the brown trout’s annual spawning ritual, mbl.is reports. Every October and into early November, the lower end of Öxará river fills up with giant brown trout who swim up from the depths of the lake to spawn.

By far the largest of all Icelandic fish species, the brown trout endemic to Þingvallavatn lake can grow to 110cm (43in), though most do not grow over one metre. Biologist Jóhannes Sturlaugsson, who has studied the species for over two decades, was on site to educate visitors on the trout.

Read more: The Brown Trout of Þingvallavatn

Sink Or Swim

Biologist Jóhannes Sturlaugsson in Þingvallavatn with brown trout

“Some things in nature naturally inspire an emotional response. The Þingvallavatn lake brown trout is one of these phenomena. It’s a fantastical, mythical creature,” says biologist Jóhannes Sturlaugsson. For the last two decades, he has studied the brown trout stock in the lake, unique in Iceland and even the world. Trout numbers in the lake are up, after years of decline. That’s good news, but the same can’t be said for another of Jóhannes’ research subjects: wild salmon, currently under threat.

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