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Shads (Twaite, American, Hickory, skipjack herring)

About Shads (Twaite, American, Hickory, skipjack herring)

The shads are a group of fish that migrate into rivers to spawn. In European waters, the shads have been decimated because of overfishing and pollution. The River Severn is one of four British rivers that support a good run for the spawning of the shads. In the USA, the Alosa Shad was only found in Atlantic waters, its range from the Florida Keys north to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. In the 1870s, this fish was introduced to the Californian coast. Since that time the range of this fish has gone as far as Alaska. The shad is a nice plump silver fish that is similar in shape to a herring. They are strong swimmers with a forked tail, and they make excellent eating. It takes 3 to 4 years for the males to mature. However, the females take about 8 years to reach breeding age. Shad will spawn in rivers in March or April. Once they have spawned, the parents migrate back to the ocean. Shad eat shrimp, worms and small fish.