Sardinella longiceps, Indian oil sardine : fisheries

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Sardinella longiceps Valenciennes, 1847

Indian oil sardine
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Sardinella longiceps   AquaMaps   Data sources: GBIF OBIS
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Image of Sardinella longiceps (Indian oil sardine)
Sardinella longiceps
Picture by Randall, J.E.

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) > Dorosomatinae
Etymology: Sardinella: Latin and Greek, sarda = sardine; name related to the island of Sardinia; diminutive (Ref. 45335).  More on author: Valenciennes.

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Marine; pelagic-neritic; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243); depth range 20 - 200 m (Ref. 28016).   Tropical; 25°N - 7°N, 57°E - 81°E (Ref. 54872)

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

Indian Ocean: northern and western parts only, Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman, but apparently not Red Sea or the Persian Gulf, eastward to southern part of India, on eastern coast to Andhra; possibly to the Andaman Islands. Thus, studies pertaining to this species from the Philippines or Indonesia probably refer to Sardinella lemuru.

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm 16.3  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 23.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 188); common length : 20.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 188); max. published weight: 200.00 g (Ref. 4883); max. reported age: 3 years (Ref. 3689)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 13-21; Anal spines: 0; Anal soft rays: 12 - 23; Vertebrae: 45 - 49. Body sub-cylindrical; a faint golden spot behind gill opening, followed by a faint golden mid-lateral line; a distinct black spot at hind border of gill cover (absence of pigment). Distinguished from all clupeids in the northern Indian Ocean by its pelvic fin ray count of i 8; from S. neglecta and S. lemuru by its longer head and more lower gill rakers. No prominent keel. See also Refs. 3683, 818 and 393 .

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Coastal pelagic (Ref. 68964). Forms schools in coastal waters and strongly migratory. Feeds mainly on phytoplankton (especially diatoms) and small crustaceans (Ref. 30573). Breeds once a year off western coasts of India when temperatures and salinity are low during the southwest monsoon months. Spawning peaks in August-September. Occurs at temperatures of 22.0-28.0 °C (Ref. 3689). Marketed fresh, dried and dried-salted. Also sold smoked and canned (Ref. 9987). Also made into fish meal and fish balls.

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

Spawning usually takes place at night (Ref. 810).

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator | Collaborators

Whitehead, P.J.P., 1985. FAO Species Catalogue. Vol. 7. Clupeoid fishes of the world (suborder Clupeoidei). 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. 123251)

  Least Concern (LC) ; Date assessed: 20 December 2019

CITES (Ref. 118484)

Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans


Human uses

Fisheries: highly commercial
FAO(fisheries: production, species profile; publication : search) | FishSource | Sea Around Us

More information

FAO areas
Food items
Food consumption
Common names
Spawning aggregation
Egg development
Aquaculture profile
Allele frequencies
Mass conversion
Stamps, Coins Misc.
Swim. type
Gill area


Special reports

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Internet sources

Aquatic Commons | BHL | Cloffa | BOLDSystems | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | Faunafri | Fishtrace | GenBank(genome, nucleotide) | GloBI | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | Tree of Life | Wikipedia(Go, Search) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoobank | Zoological Record

Estimates based on models

Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969): 22.1 - 26.7, mean 24.7 °C (based on 63 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00776 (0.00647 - 0.00932), b=3.03 (3.00 - 3.06), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245).
Trophic level (Ref. 69278):  2.4   ±0.22 se; based on food items.
Generation time: 1.2 (1.1 - 1.8) years. Estimated as median ln(3)/K based on 20 growth studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=0.5-1.4; tm=2; tmax=3; Fec=19,028).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Low vulnerability (17 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Low.