Thread Herring (Opisthonema oglinum)
AKA: herring, Atlantic thread herring, threadfin, greenback, greenie, hairyback, thread, shiner
Thread herring have a dark blue-gray back, silvery sides, a white belly and a small head. It grows up to 15 in length, but the average fish is 6 -8. It has a very long thread-like fin at the back of its dorsal that accounts for its name. (Often confused with the pilchard or scaled sardine)
Uses: You can hook them through the nose in the same place as whitebait and they make a very good cut bait when bottom fishing with dead bait. Thread herring can be rigged and trolled, or used whole or as cut bait when bottom fishing. If there is no current or it is light you can hook the thread through the area where the pelvic fin is attached to the body. A popular bait fish for tarpon, king mackerel,(Spanish mackerel) blacktip and spinner sharks, jack crevalle, redfish and snook. The threads make a great chum when cut into very small pieces and dropped overboard into the current or dropped to the bottom in a chum basket. Thread herring are also ground into frozen chum sold in dispenser bags and bulk boxes.
One of the best baits for snappers, grouper, kingfish, inshore fish like snook and trout as well.