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Alosa caspia caspia  (Eichwald, 1838)

Caspian shad
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Image of Alosa caspia caspia (Caspian shad)
Alosa caspia caspia
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Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Clupeiformes (Herrings) > Clupeidae (Herrings, shads, sardines, menhadens) > Alosinae
Etymology: Alosa: Latin, alausa = a fish cited by Ausonius and Latin, halec = pickle, dealing with the Greek word hals = salt; it is also the old Saxon name for shad = "alli" ; 1591 (Ref. 45335).

Environment / Climate / Range Ecology

Marine; freshwater; brackish; pelagic-neritic; anadromous (Ref. 51243).   Temperate; 48°N - 37°N, 27°E - 54°E

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 32.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 593); common length : 20.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 188); max. published weight: 120.00 g (Ref. 593); max. reported age: 7 years (Ref. 10549)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 0; Anal spines: 0. Body `shad-like', usually rather deep and compressed. Total gill rakers 50 to 180, long and thin, distinctly longer than filaments. Teeth poorly developed in jaws, sometimes barely detectable. A black spot posterior to gill opening and occasionally further black spots on flank in some cases.

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Eurasia: Black Sea, Sea of Azov and Caspian Sea.

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Schooling and migratory (Ref. 188); at sea, pelagic in coastal waters with steady current and avoids areas with stable salinity; migrates from sea to mouth of large rives and spawns in fresh- or slightly brackish-water at shallow sites washed by flow of large rivers. Males migrate upriver at 2-3 years, females at 4-5; many individuals reproduce 2-4 seasons. Two migration peaks, one in late April (mostly males), one in early May (mostly females), entering rivers when temperature rises above 10°C. Spawns when temperature is at least 15°C, in May to June. Spawning usually occurs in the upper 3 m. Eggs semi-pelagic and demersal. Spent fish migrate back to the sea; juveniles migrate to sea during first summer, remaining there until they mature. Feeds mainly on zooplankton (copepods and mysids) when at sea (Ref. 59043). Depending on the subspecies (10 subspecies known), some are semi-anadromous and spawn in fresh or slightly saline waters, mainly in the lower reaches, whereas others are practically marine and spawn in brackish or even fully saline oceanic waters. One of the most warm-loving Alosa of the Caspian. Only A. a. caspia of the Caspian Sea is of commercial importance (Ref. 188).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Depending on the subspecies some are semi-anadromous and spawn in fresh or slightly saline waters, mainly in the lower reaches, whereas others are practically marine and spawn in brackish or even fully saline oceanic waters (Ref.188).There are two migration peaks, one in late April (mostly males) and one in early May (mostly females). Spent fish migrate back to sea. Juveniles migrate to sea during first summer, remaining at sea until they mature (Ref. 59043).

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator | Collaborators

Whitehead, P.J.P., 1985. FAO Species Catalogue. Vol. 7. Clupeoid fishes of the world (suborder Clupeioidei). An annotated and illustrated catalogue of the herrings, sardines, pilchards, sprats, shads, anchovies and wolf-herrings. FAO Fish. Synop. 125(7/1):1-303. Rome: FAO. (Ref. 188)

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 96402)

CITES (Ref. 94142)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless




Human uses

Fisheries: highly commercial
FAO(Publication : search) | FisheriesWiki | Sea Around Us

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Internet sources

BHL | Cloffa | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | DiscoverLife | Faunafri | Fishtrace | GenBank(genome, nucleotide) | GOBASE | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | iSpecies | National databases | PubMed | Scirus | SeaLifeBase | Tree of Life | uBio | Wikipedia(Go, Search) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01175 (0.00728 - 0.01896), b=2.97 (2.83 - 3.11), based on LWR estimates for species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  3.5   ±0.46 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (tmax=7).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Moderate vulnerability (39 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Low.