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Atlantic menhaden

Artwork: Joann Wheeler 1999

Fast Fact:

Also known as Bunkers or Bug fish, the latter because of a large parasite that lives in the mouth. More pounds of Menhaden are landed each year than any other fish species in America. It is an important commercial fishery species.

Distribution Coastal: Nova Scotia to Florida.
Chesapeake Bay: Throughout the bay and tributaries in spring, summer, and autumn.
Description Body moderately deep, abdomen compressed, snout blunt; dorsum green to bluish, brassy laterally; black shoulder spot and variable number of smaller spots present on flank.
Max. size 7-8 inches.
Food preference Plankton.
Spawning location Northern Atlantic waters.
Spawning period March through May; September and October.
Egg type Buoyant
Additional Information DNR Fish Facts or Juvenile Fish Index

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