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Scientific Name:
Alosa pseudoharengus (Wilson, 1811) (ITIS)
Common Name:
Alewife, mulhaden, grey herring, golden shad
Alewife - Photo by Shawn Good; Vermont Department of Fish & Wildlife
Native To:
Atlantic Ocean (CABI)
Date of U.S. Introduction:
Known to have been present in Lake Ontario in 1873. Possibly native to Lake Ontario. Present in Lake Erie in 1931, Huron in 1933, Michigan in 1949, and Lake Superior in 1954 (Miller 1957)
Means of Introduction:
Spread to Lake Erie through the Welland Canal; presumed to have spread from Lake Erie to other Great Lakes via the Detroit River and Lake St. Clair (Miller 1957); intentionally stocked in inland waters (Stahlnecker 2000)
Various impacts to native species (CABI)
Current U.S. Distribution:
Great Lakes; Inland waters throughout Eastern U.S.

Distribution/Maps/Survey Status



Selected Resources

The section below contains highly relevant resources for this species, organized by source. Or, to display all related content view all resources for Alewife.


IUCN. Species Survival Commission. Invasive Species Specialist Group.
Michigan State University. Midwest Invasive Species Information Network.

Federal Government

DOI. USGS. Wetland and Aquatic Research Center.
Provides distribution maps and collection information (State and County).

State and Local Government

Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

See also: Invasive Species for exotic animal and plant pests invading Indiana, causing economic and visual damage
Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Division of Wildlife.


Columbia University. Center for Environmental Research and Conservation.
University of Wisconsin Sea Grant.