Appearance: a silvery fish with large scales and a pale belly. Their most distinguishing feature is their huge dorsal fin, with bands of green, orange, purple and red. They have large eyes, an underslung mouth and, as all salmonids do, an adipose fin.
British record: 4lb 4oz 8dms (British record committee 2015)
Lateral line scale count: 75-90 (this is the dark row of scales along the central length of the fish's body)
Lifespan: 8 to 14 years
We like grayling because: its streamlined build and huge, brightly coloured dorsal fin makes the grayling the 'Lady of the Stream'
How to catch grayling
Primarily a river fish, the grayling is found in fast, clean rivers, mainly in the upper reaches but it will tolerate clean middle rivers. Fly fishing is the preferred tactic for this game fish, where an angler tries to provoke a fish to bite using an artificial lure known as a fly (a hook dressed up to resemble an insect). Grayling can also be caught using stick float tactics using more traditional baits like maggots, worms and bread.
Where to catch grayling
River fisheries such as the River Severn and River Calder hold good populations of grayling.