Redband trout can be found in a variety of habitats depending on the age of the fish. Adults are generally found in areas of abundant cover associated with deep pools, dead trees, undercut banks, and overhanging vegetation. Juveniles are often found in shallow stream habitats. The redband trout is a spring (March through June) spawner with eggs usually hatching in four to seven weeks.
California's Native Fish Crisis
CalTrout issues a detailed status report of California native fish. Warning: Large PDF File.
Warner Lakes Redband
In the remote northeast corner of California, up a long and steep forest service road, runs a tiny creek which holds a native redband trout known as the Warner Lakes redband. Inland redband trout are defined as an all inland, nonanadromous rainbow population.
According to Behnke, several desiccated basins west of Alvord Basin and north of Lahontan Basin hold redband trout as their native trout species. One of those redband trout holding basins is the Warner Lakes Basin.
The redband is a unique subspecies adapted to the Warner Lakes Basin ecosystem. In fact, these redband trout constitute a significant percentage of Warner Basin fishery. In these closed high desert basins, redband trout have evolved to survive in environments with vast extremes of both water flow and temperature.
According Behnke, Warner Lakes redband are one of only eight separate desert basin populations of interior native redband trout. The Warner Basin is between Catlow Basin to the east, and the Chewaucan and Goose Lake Basins to the west. Again, according to Behnke, the Warner redband trout are likely most closely related to redbands native to the Goose Lake and Chewaucan River Basins.
California Heritage Trout
Catch, photograph, and release the Warner Lakes redband along with five other different forms of California native trout from their historic range and California Department of Fish and Game will send you a personalized certificate featuring the art of Joseph Tomelleri (similiar to this one).