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Any of several freshwater food and game fishes (genus Salvelinus) of the salmon family, distinguished from the similar trout by light, rather than black, spots; by a boat-shaped, rather than flat, vomer (bone) on the roof of the mouth; and by having teeth on the front of the vomer rather than on the shaft. Char often have smaller scales than their relatives. The Arctic char, of North America and Europe, inhabits the Arctic and adjacent oceans and enters rivers and lakes to breed. It may weigh 15 lbs (7 kg) or more. The brook trout, Dolly Varden trout, and lake trout are native North American char.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on char, visit Britannica.com.