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Allis Shad (ALOSA ALOSA)

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SHAD, ALLIS / ALOSA ALOSA
*AT AT 2.16 4.12 Chesil Beach England 77 P. Gerrard
*SH SH 2.16 4.12 Chesil Beach England 77 P. Gerrard

The Allis Shad (ALOSA ALOSA)

is a herring-like, planktivorous fish with silvery white sides and a deep blue colouration on its back. It is most commonly recorded at a size between 30 -50 cm but has been reported to reach 70 cm. Like other shads its upper jaw is distinctly notched in the mid line and the gill cover has distinct radiating ridges. coastal species recorded from many areas around the British Isles. Known spawning populations exist in the River Tamar with other possible spawning sites in the English and Bristol Channels and the Solway Firth.

The habitat of the allis shad is coastal water but it returns to freshwater to spawn above gravel substrates. Alosa alosa has been reported in depths ranging from 10 -150 m.

Allis Shad (ALOSA ALOSA)

The allis shad is distinguished from the other European shad, the twaite shad (Alosa fallax), by having between 80-130 gill rakers on the first gill arch while Alosa fallax has between 40-60. The allis shad is 'anadromous' in that it spends its life in the ocean but enters rivers in April and May to spawn before returning to the sea. Juveniles remain in the rivers for up to 24 months.

The key identification features of the Allis Shad are that the dorsal profile of the allis shad is curved and the tail fins are forked; the body is flattened side to side with strong spines along the belly. The allis shad is deep bodied with silvery scales and its back is deep blue in colour with silvery white sides. Also has a dark spot behind the gill cover (sometimes absent). The allis shad can grow up to 70 cm length.

Information supplied by http://www.marlin.ac.uk

 
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