Alternative Title

Anadromous Fish Project

Document Type

Report

Department/Program

Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Publication Date

1968

Abstract

Scales were collected from alewife, blueback, American shad and hickory shad in each tidal river system in Virginia at weekly intervals. Reading of alewife scales is complete to date and the alewife catch from the York and Rappahannock Rivers has been analyzed for sex composition and spawning history.

Lack of catch records from the James and Potomac Rivers precludes analysis of these populations. Fishing effort in the major rivers during 1968 was equal to that of 1967. The catch of river herring increased approximately .4 million pounds over 19_67 increasing catch per unit of effort to the highest level on record. Catch by pound nets in the upper Rappahannock River was estimated to be 1,654,015 pounds of river herring and 303,731 pounds of shad. In the upper York River, pound nets caught a minimum of 557,486 pounds of river herring and 129,702 pounds of shad with stake gill catch estimated .at 221,124 pounds of shad. River herring spawn in all but a few smaller tributaries of the Rappahannock River between RA32 and RA93; in the Potomac River herring spawn in most Virginia tributaries between PT35 and PT90. Maryland tributaries.were not investigated. Juvenile alosids in.the Rappahannock River began seaward migration during October coincident with lowering river water temperatures.

Keywords

Alosa -- Virginia, Anadromous fishes -- Virginia, Atlantic herring fisheries -- Virginia, Shad fisheries -- Virginia

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