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  • snout bulbous, fleshy, overhangs mouth
    Dorosoma cepedianum, Gizzard Shad, American Gizzard Shad
    A 25-36
    lateral scales 52-70
  • snout pointed, not overhanging mouth
    black shoulder spot
    Dorosoma petenense, Threadfin Shad
    A 17-25
    lateral scales 41-48
  • dark spot BEHIND gill cover
    D no black tip
    Harengula clupeola, False Pilchard, False Herring, False Pilchard Sardine
    gill rakers 30-32
    tongue: width of 2 tooth plates = 20-33% combined length
    pectoral 19-22% SL
    pelvic inserts nearer pectoral base than to A
  • orange spot behind operculum, orange stripes on body
    D tip black
    Harengula humeralis, Redear Sardine
    tongue: width of 2 tooth plates = 10% combined length
  • dark spot BEHIND gill cover
    D no black tip
    Harengula jaguana, Scaled Sardine, Scaled Herring
    gill rakers 32-39
    tongue: width of 2 tooth plates = 20-33% combined length
    pectoral 22-25% SL
    pelvic inserts mid-way pectoral base to A
  • top jaw - no central notch
    tail base spot
    Lile piquitinga, Atlantic Piquitinga, Atlantic Piquitinga Herring
    rear edge gill opening - no fleshy lobes
    pelvic I, 7
    belly - ridge of strongly keeled scutes
  • top jaw - no central notch
    D last ray = long filament
    Opisthonema oglinum, Atlantic Thread Herring
    rear of gill opening - 2 fleshy lobes
    pelvic I,7
    full row belly scutes
  • top jaw - no central notch
    Rhinosardinia amazonica, Amazon Spinejaw Sprat, Shortband Round Herring, Amazon Spinejaw Herring
    top jaw - spine points back
    rear edge gill opening - no fleshy lobes
    full row belly scutes
  • semi-cylindrical
    top jaw no central notch
    rear of gill opening - 2 fleshy lobes
    operculum corner: +/- black spot
    Sardinella aurita, Spanish Sardine, Round Sardinella
    pelvic I,8
    D no filament
    nape scales paired
    belly fully scuted