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Sardina pilchardus 2011.jpg

Sardine ( Sardina pilchardus )

Order : Herring-like (Clupeiformes)
Subordination : Clupeoidei
Family : Herring (Clupeidae)
Subfamily : Alosinae
Genre : Sardina
Type : sardine
Scientific name of the  genus
Antipa , 1904
Scientific name of the  species
Sardina pilchardus
( Walbaum , 1792)

The sardine ( Sardina pilchardus ), also known as the Atlantic or European sardine , is the only species of the genus Sardina in the herring family (Clupeidae). It is an important food fish . Their occurrence extends from the northeast Atlantic and the North Sea to Senegal . In the Mediterranean , it is more common in the west than in the east, and is also found in the Marmara Sea and the Black Sea . The sardine is named after Sardinia .


Sardines grow up to 27.5 centimeters long. The body is approximately cylindrical with a rounded belly. Young animals are more flattened on the sides. The gill cover has three to five almost vertical grooves in the lower half, the rear edge of the gill opening is smoothly rounded. The gap in the mouth ends in front of the rear edge of the eye. The dorsal fin has 13 to 21 soft rays, the anal fin 12 to 23, the last two of which are elongated. The pelvic fin attachment is behind the dorsal fin attachment .

Way of life

Sardines inhabit shallow, open water areas near the coast. They form large swarms that are usually at depths of around 25 to 100 meters during the day and rise to 10 to 35 meters at night. Sardines migrate north in summer and south in winter. They gather in large swarms, surrounded by their predators, the sand tiger sharks , dolphins and whales . But there are also attacks from above by boobies and other sea birds. The diet of sardines consists of zooplankton , especially fish eggs , larvae and small crustaceans .

They reach sexual maturity at about two years of age and about 13 to 14 centimeters in length. The spawning times vary: off the coast of Portugal the fish spawn from February to April, in the English Channel in April, in the North Sea from June to August and in the Mediterranean from September to May. The 50,000 to 60,000 eggs, around 1.5 mm in size, are laid in groups near the coast or in open water. The larvae hatch after two to four days and are then about 4 mm long. The maximum age is estimated at 15 years.


Salad plate with sardines and endive .

Sardines are edible fish and are caught with purse seine and drift nets . The meat has a fat content of 5.2 percent. The best-known form of preparation in Germany is soaking in oil (" oil sardine "). The sardines used for this are small according to the cans . In Portugal and Spain , grilling is preferred, as they are more than 20 cm long.

Individual evidence

  1. a b c Sardine on (English)
  2. ^ A b c Bent J. Muus, Jørgen G. Nielsen: The marine fish of Europe in the North Sea, Baltic Sea and Atlantic. Kosmos, Stuttgart 1999, ISBN 3-440-07804-3 .
  3. Phoenix Theme Day Ocean Adventure Part 1 Between Hunters and Hunted ( Memento of the original from December 14, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /

Web links

Commons : Sardine ( Sardina pilchardus )  - Collection of images, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Sardine  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations