One of the interesting features of these maturing fish is that the scales become tight and flatten smoothly to the body. This is in contrast to the rapidly growing fish that have growing scales with rougher and open edges that often come loose when they are netted. You can see examples of this in my last recent posts, with a photo showing a fish with many scales knocked off.
Someone who cares a great deal about the exact features of the scales is my friend Eiji Umemura who makes prints of fish. His work is exquisite in quality and detail. Eiji actually inks the fish and transfers that image to fine cloth. This makes a work of art that is also an exact image of the fish. He paints the eye in by hand and adds some more careful details such as spots. This is a wonderful alternative to taxidermy. You can learn more about Eiji and fish prints at his website . Also , he is an excellent fishing guide who speaks Japanese and English.