Document Type



Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Publication Date



This report describes the results of the twenty-third year of a continuing study to estimate the relative abundance and assess the status of American shad (Alosa sapidissima) stocks in Virginia by monitoring the spawning runs in the James, York and Rappahannock rivers in spring 2020, evaluating hatchery programs, and contributing to coast-wide assessments (ASMFC 2007, ASMFC 2020).

We also report on two fisheryindependent monitoring programs using anchor gillnets in the Rappahannock River (year 3) and the Chickahominy River (year 6; a major tributary of the James River), to determine relative abundance and stock structure for the adult spawning run of river herring (A. pseudoharengus, and A. aestivalis).

Further, we report on the year 5 of a monitoring program for juvenile alosines by using nighttime surface trawls in the Chickahominy River and present an index of juvenile abundance from this survey. Additional objectives were to monitor bycatch of American shad in a permitted gill-net fishery and American shad and river herring in pound-net fisheries.



shad, shad fisheries, alewife, blueback herring, Virginia


US Fish and Wildlife Service, Virginia Marine Resources Commission, Virginia Institute of Marine Science. Contract no. F-116-R-23. Project period: 15 November 2019 - 14 November 2020.