• local adaptation;
  • morphological variation;
  • geographical separation;
  • salmonids

The trout (Salmo trutta) has been divided into three forms: sea-run trout, lake-run brown trout, and resident brown trout. They differ in their living environment, migratory behaviour, growth and appearance. As local trout populations are often isolated, and gene flow between them is minimal, differentiation between populations can be expected. The morphology of 1-year-old trout from ten populations representing all three forms was studied in a common-garden experiment. The fish were reared under similar environmental conditions, and 20 morphometric characters were measured from each individual fish. Marked morphological differentiation was found, and differences between populations were greater than differences between forms. The results suggest that the differences have a genetic basis, and they are likely to indicate adaptation to local environmental conditions in the native habitat of the trout.