Pilchard (Harengula jaguana)
AKA: scaled sardine, white bait, horse minnow
Pilchards are distinguished by their sharply pointed, keeled belly, bright, shiny sides and large eyes. Pilchards are small bait fish in the herring family that travel in large schools. Scaled sardines grow to an average of six inches and are great baits for almost all species of fish. Pilchards are often confused with Thread Herring in appearance, but generally have a larger eye and there is no thread on the dorsal fin.
USES: Pilchards are great for almost every fishing method. When trolling, hook them through the nose. Do not go through the eye socket, they will come off the hook. If you look closely, you will see a small “V” shaped area in front of the eyes – the hook should go through this area. If it is hard to insert the hook, then you know this is the right spot.