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Difference Between Red Salmon and Pink Salmon

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Main Difference

The main difference between Red Salmon and Pink Salmon is that the Red Salmon changes its color into the red during spawning, whereas Pink Salmon does not change its color during spawning.

Red Salmon vs. Pink Salmon

The red salmon considered as the reddish-pink meat of the sockeye salmon, which uses as food, while pink salmon considered as the pale pink meat of the humpback salmon, which also used as the food. The ‘Sockeye salmon’ is the common name for red salmon; on the other hand, the ‘Humpback salmon’ is known as the common name for the pink salmon.

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The red salmon becomes red and changes its color during their reproducing in the freshwater; on the contrary, the pink salmon does not change its color in the freshwater during spawning. The weight of the red salmon is about 6 pounds; on the flip side, the weight of the pink salmon is around 4 pounds.

After hatching, the red salmon almost spends over a year in freshwater and then goes to towards the sea, whereas the pink salmon after hatching goes straight to the sea. The red salmon is considered the second most abundant salmons in the pacific ocean; on the other hand, the pink salmon known as the most abundant salmons in the pacific ocean.

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The most extensive red salmon run is present in Bristol Bay, and Alaska has a system of freshwater lakes and sometimes saltwater bays. On the contrary, the most extensive pink salmon run is present in southeast Alaska, having a minor climate and plentiful rainfall, or many short watercourses running towards the sea. Considering culinary value, the red salmon is firm in texture and rich in flavor; on the flip side, the pink salmon consists of a soft texture and a mild flavor.

The red salmon is, although considered good with other strong flavors; on the other hand, the pink salmon deemed to be good for fishcakes and salads because of its delicate flavor. Red salmon is more costly and expensive, while pink salmon is less expensive than red salmon. The red salmon consists of about 8 grams of fat and usually comes in at 186 calories for a 4-ounce serving, while pink salmon contains 152 calories and have 5 grams of fat in a 4-ounce serving.

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Comparison Chart

Red SalmonPink Salmon
The red salmon is pacific salmon and are mainly caught in the wild, changes its color into red.The pink salmon is also a pacific salmon and usually caught in the wild, but it does not change its color.
Considered As
Considered as the reddish-pink meat of the sockeye salmon which uses as foodConsidered as the pale pink meat of the humpback salmon which also used as the food
Common Name
The ‘Sockeye salmon’ is the common name for red salmonThe ‘Humpback salmon’ is known as the common name for the pink salmon
Color Difference
Becomes red and changes its color during their reproducing in the freshwaterDoes not change its color in the freshwater during spawning
Size
The weight is about 6 poundsThe weight is around 4 pounds
After Hatching
Almost spends over a year in freshwater and then goes to towards the sea after hatchingAfter hatching goes straight to the sea
Abundance
Considered as the second most abundant salmons in the pacific oceanKnown as the most abundant salmons in the pacific ocean
Largest Salmon Runs
The largest red salmon run is present in Bristol Bay, and in Alaska has a system of freshwater lakes and sometimes saltwater baysThe largest pink salmon run is present in southeast Alaska having a minor climate and plentiful rainfall, or many short watercourses running towards the sea
Taste
Considering culinary value consists of the firm in texture and rich in flavorConsidering culinary value consists of a soft texture and a mild flavor
Recipies
Although considered good with other strong flavorsConsidered good for fishcakes and as salads because of its delicate flavor
Cost
More costly and expensiveLess expensive than red salmon
Nutritions
Consists of about 8 grams of fat and usually comes in at 186 calories for a 4-ounce servingContains 152 calories and have 5 grams of fat in a 4-ounce serving
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What is Red Salmon?

Red salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) or known as sockeye salmon, is considered as the second most abundant salmon in the Pacific Ocean. The features of red salmon are that it consists of a significant bright, red-orange color.

The flavor of the red salmon contains an intense flavor and has a firm texture. The red color of the red salmon is because of the eating of krill (shrimp-like crustacean). The red salmon changes into the deep red color from their bright silver skin when moving from upstream to spawn.

The weight of the red salmon is about 6 pounds, and it consists of approximately 8 grams of fat and usually comes in at 186 calories for a 4-ounce serving. The red salmon is expensive and more costly than pink salmon.

What is Pink Salmon?

Pink salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbusha) Is also known as humpback salmon and is one of those types of salmon fishes which are most abundant in the pacific ocean. The pink salmon consists of a light pale pink colored flesh, also mild flavor and soft texture.

The pink salmon is sold either as canned fish, smoked, frozen, or fresh. The pink salmon is called humpback salmon or humpies because of the presence of a distinctive hump on their back during reproduction.

The pink salmon contains 152 calories and has 5 grams of fat in a 4-ounce serving, and it weighs about 4 pounds. The pink salmon is less expensive than red salmon. It goes straight towards the sea after hatching.

Key Differences

  1. The salmon, which consists of reddish-pink meat of the sockeye salmon, is known as the red salmon and importantly used as food; on the other hand, the salmon contains pale pink meat of the humpback salmon is known as the pink salmon.
  2. The common name for red salmon is known as ‘Sockeye salmon’; on the contrary, the common name for pink salmon known as ‘Humpback salmon.’
  3. The red salmon contains more cost and more expensive than pink salmon; on the flip side, the pink salmon is generally cheaper than red salmon.
  4. In the recipes, the red salmon considered good with other intense flavors, whereas the pink salmon used as salads or fishcakes due to its delicate nature and a mild taste.
  5. The texture of the red salmon is firm, and it is rich in taste while considering its culinary values; on the other hand, the pink salmon having culinary values into consideration contains soft texture and mild flavor.
  6. The second most abundant salmon in the Pacific Ocean is the red salmon, which weighs about 6 pounds; on the contrary, the most abundant salmon of all in the Pacific Ocean is the pink salmon, which weighs about 4 pounds.

Conclusion

The above discussion concludes that the red salmon contains the significant red color in its meat and having an intense flavor, while pink salmon includes a pale pink color in its meat and having mild flavor. The red salmon changes its color during spawning and remains in freshwater for one year after hatching, whereas pink salmon does not change its color and move towards the sea after hatching.

Aimie Carlson

Aimie Carlson is an English language enthusiast who loves writing and has a master degree in English literature. Follow her on Twitter at @AimieCarlson

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