Altamaha Roe Shad ??

Discussion in 'GEORGIA RIVERS TALK' started by tbird, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. tbird

    tbird Member

    Messages:
    266
    State:
    IN
    A couple of years ago early in the year I ran into a bunch of good ol boys who had a camp set up on one of the islands below Altamaha Park. They were setting lines for catfish doing a little hog hunting and gill netting what they called roe shad. Can anyone tell me if these are American shad that is what they looked like? I know up north they are considered a sport fish. Does anyone fish for them in the Altamaha with rod and reel?
     
  2. BassMassey

    BassMassey Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,883
    State:
    Oconee
    I beleive they are ocean run american shad. From what i've read they come up the river starting in early february. I've caught them below the sinclair spillway which is over 150 river miles from jesup.
     

  3. tbird

    tbird Member

    Messages:
    266
    State:
    IN
    Thanks for the reply. I have been reading about these fish and find it very interesting. Known as the ‘founding fish’ these fellows kept Washington’s Army from starving
    I am going to try catching some. I bet they are a food source for big flatheads.
     
  4. bugg

    bugg Active Member

    Messages:
    382
    State:
    Georgia
    Actually the season opens January 1st every year. Roe Shad are the females and the males are called Buck's. The female fish is loaded with eggs which is considered a delicacy. They are caught on the Altamaha River in drift nets and set net's. They spend their life in deep salt water and are a very bony species. The adult fish come into fresh water to lay eggs and reproduce. Unlike salmon, the fish survive breeding and can return to the sea; they do not inhabit fresh water except to spawn. They are an excellent eating fish but you really have to know how to cook them because of the bone's. My favorite recipe is to wrap them in aluminum foil and bake them in the oven for about six to eight hours at 150°. They slowly cook and the bones dissolve allowing you to eat the bones with the meat.

    I have never heard of anyone catching them on the hook and line in the Altamaha. Thay say it is because of the muddy water. Shad are caught on hook and line in dark water rivers. I used to go to the St. John River in Florida and fish for shad every year. We would troll for them using a small spon and a small feathered jig. Catching the limit was not unusual. They are great too can. Years ago Shad was a major food source for settlers along the Altamaha River. The fish were canned and used much as we use canned Salmon today.


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    Last edited: Jan 15, 2010