The various species of herrings found in freshwater, estuaries and inshore areas have similar brain locations. They should be killed humanely by iki jime or a firm knock to the head before being placed in an ice slurry. Smaller specimens (less than 20-25 cm) taken from warm water (>20°C/ 70°F) may also be killed humanely by placing them directly into an ice slurry.
- The American Shad has a typical herring-like body shape with a silvery, metallic sheen, blues and greens on top, fading to white below.
- The lower jaw of the American Shad does not protrude beyond the upper jaw when fully closed.
- This species if found on both East and West coasts of North America. It is native from Newfoundland to central Florida in the East. It was introduced to the West Coast via the Sacramento and Columbia Rivers, and is now found from Alaska to Mexico.
- American Shad spend most of their life at sea, returning to freshwater streams to spawn. Newly hatched larvae are found in rivers during the summer.
- Juvenile fish work their way back down river and by autumn they enter the sea and remain there until maturity. Adult fish can be found schooling at the surface as far offshore as the continental shelf.
Fish Size Common Length:
Commonly 8-12 inches,long. Maximum size around 20 inches long.