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Synonyms
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  • Sardinella granigera  Valenciennes, 1847:267 (Egypt).
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  • Alausa eba  Valenciennes, 1847:417 (Gorée, Senegal).
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  • Pellonula modesta  Fischer, 1885, (Elobey, Equatorial Guinea).
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  • Sardinella cameronensis  Regan, 1917:380 (Cameroon).
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  • Sardinella maderensis  Ben-Tuvia, 1960:499 (synopsis); Whitehead, 1967:47, 49 (types of granigera, eba); CLOFNAM, 1973:103 (synonymy); FNAM, 1984:223 (synopsis).
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  • Sardinella maderensis  , CLOFETA, in press (complete bibliography) ;SFSA, in press (southern Africa); Whitehead & Bauchot, in press (types of granigera, eba)
    FAO Names
    En - Madeiran sardinella, Fr - Grande allache, Sp - Machuelo.
    3Alpha Code: SAE     Taxonomic Code: 1210501217
    Scientific Name with Original Description
    Clupea maderensis  Lowe, 1839(June), Trans.zool.Soc.Lond., 2(3):189 (Madeira) (wrongly dated 1841 in some publications, e.g. CLOFNAM).
    Diagnostic Features
    Body elongate, but variable in depth, belly fairly sharply keeled; total scutes 31 to 34.  Lower gillrakers 70 to 166 (in fishes 6 cm standard length or more).  Upper pectoral finrays white on outer side, the membrane between black. Resembles S. aurita, but pelvic finrays i 7 (i 8 in S. aurita ) and no black spot on hind part of gill cover (but faint gold or black area just behind gill opening). Distinguished from S. rouxi by having more lower gillrakers (only 30 to 40 in S. rouxi ) and the caudal fin grey, its tips almost black (yellow in S. rouxi ). 
    Geographical Distribution

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    Mediterranean (southern and eastern parts, also penetrating Suez Canal); eastern Atlantic (Gilbraltar southward to Angola and a single recorded specimen from Walvis Bay, Namibia).
    Habitat and Biology
    Coastal,pelagic,but tolerant of low salinities in estuaries,  schooling, preferring waters of 24° C, at surface or at bottom down to 50 m, strongly migratory.Feeds on a variety of small planktonic invertebrates, also fish larvae and phytoplankton.
    Breeds only once in the year, during the warm season (July-September), in coastal waters.  Juveniles and adults show clear north-south migrations in the Gabon Congo-Angola sector of their' range and also in the Sierra Leone -Mauritania sector, each area having nurseries; the movements are correlated with the seasonal upwelling. Migrations in the central part (Ivory Coast-Ghana) are not so marked.
    Size
    To 30 cm standard length, usually to 25 cm.
    Interest to Fisheries
    Of considerable importance off West African coasts, but combined with S. aurita in most statistics, partly because the two are often caught together. The total catch reported for this species to FAO for 1999 was 146 097 t. The countries with the largest catches were Senegal (105 120 t) and Latvia (15 031 t).
    Remarks
    Many more West African references in the literature (right up to the present time) give this fish as S. eba a substantial number use the name S. cameronensis for fishes caught in the Cameroon area. Attempts to distinguish three species, however, remain unconvincing in view of the considerable variation in body depth and, most likely, gillraker numbers.
    Source of Information
    FAO Species catalogue Vol. 7. Clupeoid fishes of the world. (Suborder CLUPEOIDEI) An annotated and illustrated catalogue of the herrings, sardines, pilchards, sprats, anchovies and wolf-herrings. Part 1. Chirocentridae, Clupeidae and Pristigasteridae.Whitehead, P.J.P. 1985.  FAO Fish. Synop., (125)Vol.7 Pt. 1:303 p.
     
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