Regulators find shad, an important fish, are ‘depleted’

August 10, 2020 GMT

Overfishing, dams and pollution are among the factors that have steeply reduced the population of an ecologically important fish on the East Coast, regulators have said.

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission recently completed an assessment of the population of American shad and found it to be “depleted,” the commission said. Changing ocean conditions and climate change have also likely played a role in reducing the fish’s population from historic levels, it said.

Shad are small, herring-like fish that live from Newfoundland to Florida and play a key role in the food chain of rivers and oceans. An arm of the fisheries commission found that crafting a recovery plan for the fish will need to take into account human factors such as habitat destruction and fishing.


Shad are fished commercially in several East Coast states, though the volume of the fishery is relatively small.