You can sponsor this page

Alosa maeotica (Grimm, 1901)

Black sea shad
Upload your photos and videos
Pictures | Google image
Image of Alosa maeotica (Black sea shad)
Alosa maeotica
Picture by FAO

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes(genus, species) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Teleostei (teleosts) > Clupeiformes (Herrings) > Alosidae (Shads and Sardines)
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: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Marine; freshwater; brackish; pelagic-neritic. Temperate; 48°N - 40°N, 27°E - 43°E (Ref. 188)

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

Eurasia: Black Sea and Sea of Azov.

Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm 14.0, range 13 - 15 cm
Max length : 33.2 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 96734); 33.8 cm TL (female); common length : 18.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 188); max. published weight: 331.70 g (Ref. 96734); max. published weight: 331.70 g; max. reported age: 6 years (Ref. 10547)

Short description Identification keys | Morphology | Morphometrics

Dorsal spines (total): 0; Anal spines: 0. Body fairly elongate, more `herring-like' than `shad-like'. Gill rakers thin and straight, often closely packed and pointed, usually shorter than gill filaments. Teeth well developed in both jaws. Other Black Sea Alosa have more gill rakers (A. caspia 50 to 80 and A. pontica 47 to 66). Sardinella aurita is more slender, has many more gill rakers and i 8 pelvic fin rays.

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Non-anadromous, entering limans and lower parts of river deltas, but only occasionally in freshwater. They are more or less abundant in lower reaches of rivers and coastal lagoons. A cold-loving species, tolerating 3 or 4°C.(Ref. 188). At sea, pelagic in deep water and enters brackish lagoons to spawn. Mature adults spawn first at 2 years and many individuals spawn for 2-4 seasons. Eggs sink to bottom. Spent individuals return to the sea to feed. In autumn, they migrate to southern Black Sea to overwinter. Juveniles migrate to the sea or estuaries during the first summer (Ref. 59043). Adults feed mainly on small fishes (mainly sprats and anchovies) also on shrimps, gammarids and other large crustaceans (Ref. 188). In northern Black Sea, the decline in habitat quality in suitable estuarine ecosystems is expected to have an impact in the immediate future (Ref. 59043).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturities | Reproduction | Spawnings | Egg(s) | Fecundities | Larvae

Juveniles migrate to sea or remain in estuaries during their first summer (Ref. 59043). In autumn, they migrate to southern Black Sea to overwinter. As spring approaches, they start to move into brackish lagoons to spawn until early summer. After spawning, spent fish return to sea to feed. Many individuals spawn for 2-4 seasons (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 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. 130435)

  Least Concern (LC) ; Date assessed: 01 January 2008


Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans


Human uses

Fisheries: minor commercial
FAO - Publication: search | FishSource |

More information

Trophic ecology
Food items
Diet compositions
Food consumptions
Food rations
Population dynamics
Max. ages / sizes
Length-weight rel.
Length-length rel.
Mass conversions
Life cycle
Spawning aggregations
Egg developments
Larval dynamics
FAO areas
BRUVS - Videos
Gill areas
Body compositions
Oxygen consumptions
Swimming type
Swimming speeds
Visual pigment(s)
Fish sounds
Diseases / Parasites
Toxicities (LC50s)
Human related
Aquaculture systems
Aquaculture profiles
Ciguatera cases
Stamps, coins, misc.


Special reports

Download XML

Internet sources

AFORO (otoliths) | Aquatic Commons | BHL | Cloffa | BOLDSystems | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes: genus, species | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | FAO - Publication: search | Faunafri | Fishipedia | Fishtrace | GenBank: genome, nucleotide | GloBI | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | National databases | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | Socotra Atlas | Tree of Life | Wikipedia: Go, Search | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoological Record

Estimates based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804):  PD50 = 0.5000   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00724 (0.00418 - 0.01256), b=3.05 (2.90 - 3.20), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic level (Ref. 69278):  4.4   ±0.8 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (tmax=6).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153):  Low vulnerability (24 of 100).
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Low.