ALEWIFE; GASPEREAU; SAWBELLY; KYAK; BRANCH HERRING; FRESH-WATER HERRING; GRAYBACK
The alewife, like the shad and the salmon makes its growth in the sea, but enters fresh water streams to spawn. This “anadromous” habit, as it is called, forced itself on the attention of the early settlers on our coasts. In the words of an eyewitness, “experience hath taught them at New Plymouth that in April there is a fish much like a herring that comes up into the small brooks to spawn, and when the water is not knee deep they will presse up through your hands, yea, thow you beat at them with cudgels, and in such abundance as is incredible.” And they are no less persevering in their struggles upstream today. Numbers of them are to be seen in many streams, any spring, alternately swimming ahead; resting in the eddy behind some irregularity of the bottom; then moving ahead again, between one’s feet if one happens to be standing in midstream. And they are much more successful than the shad in surmounting fishways of suitable design.
From Fishes of the Gulf of Maine by Bigelow and Schroeder (1953) online courtesy of MBL/WHOIhttp://www.gma.org/fogm/Pomolobus_pseudoharengus.htm
This Saturday, March 31st , help out with the alewife count right here in Little River.