British Wildlife Wiki

The Herring (Clupea harengus), is one of the most abundant species in thge North Atlantic area.


The Herring is a small streamlined fish that is silver in colour with a row of silver-blue scales along the top portion of both sides of its body. It has an even forked tail and small dorsal thin which are almost yelow in colour.

Distribution and Habitat[]

It is found of the coasts of northern Europe, Iceland, southern Greenland, the United States and Canada. There are several races with different spawning grounds, migration patterns and habits. Each race has been given its own name such as the Baltic Herring which lives in the Baltic Sea. There are may races, some have special adaptations for the cold but they all have the same basic biology.


This free-swimming species forms shoals varing from thousands of fish to just small groups of a few hundred.


Herring feed on small planktonsieved out of the water with the help of their gill rakers. The plankton they eat follow vertical migrations at night and leave for the depths at dawn. Trawlers use this to help catch Herring.