• Herring

Latin name


Other names

American Shad, Atlantic Herring, Alewife, Threadfin Shad


Body compressed from the sides, with jagged edge of abdomen. Scales moderate or large, rarely small. Upper jaw not protruding from lower jaw. The mouth is moderate. Teeth, if present, rudimentary and protruding. The anal fin is of moderate length and has less than 80 rays. The dorsal fin is located above the pelvic fins. The caudal fin is bifurcated.


Herring are found in all seas except the bitterly cold waters of the Arctic and Antarctic.


Most members of the herring family are marine. Some of them are anadromous and spawn in fresh water, and some species that are of freshwater origin stay out at sea. Herring usually move in vast schools. In the ocean, such schools can extend for many miles, making it possible to harvest fish in large quantities.


Herring can live up to 20-25 years, but it is rare to find fish of this age nowadays. The ongoing active industrial fishing significantly reduces the life span of herring. The maximum length is 46 cm and weighs about 2 kg.

Life history and Behavior

No information

Food and feeding habits

Herring feed on plankton, sifting their food through their numerous gill covers. They are used as bait, pieces or whole, by anglers for various types of game.


No information


Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Squad Clupeiformes
Family Clupeidae
Genus Clupea
Species C. harengus
Conservation status Least Concern
Habitat Pelagic
Life span, years 16
Maximum body weight, kg 1.1
Maximum length, cm 45
Sailing speed, m/s No information
Threat to people Edible
Way of eating Planktonophage

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