American & Hickory Shad

shad, deadly dick
my snagged shad on a deadly dick 3/4 green

Hickory Shad (Alosa mediocris)

Hickory Shad are silver on their sides with a grayish to green back, and a prominent dark spot, followed by a row of lighter spots (especially when fresh) on the upper part of the side just behind the gill cover the body is long but compressed in shape. Asymmetrical from top to bottom and in cross section and wedge-shaped.  Their lower jaw protrudes significantly beyond the upper jaw when the mouth is closed. Each scale on the sides has a small dark spot.  



american shad, nanticoke river, delaware, laurel, seaford
Chad Betts with a nice American Shad from the Nanticoke

American Shad (Alosa sapidissima)

These are the largest of the river herring Family, American shad average around 3 lbs., with fish up to 5 lbs.  They are silver in the sides with a greenish to blue back.  Narrow and symmetrical top to bottom, and deep bodied from the side.  A row of dark spots on the sides running back from the gill cover.  When the mouth is closed the upper and lower jaws are equal length. 

Catching them can be fun on Light setups and using very small, brightly colored shad darts, spoons, jigs, or minnow imitation lures. Fly fishing with darts, gold or white streamers, and other wet flies. Often taken near the surface, will “tail-walk” and sometimes jump.
Delaware River Shad Fishing Reports Facebook page

Season and creel limits for Delaware 2021

American &
hickory shad

Closed Nanticoke R. & its tribs.; Open all year elsewhere

10 in any combination/angler/day



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