California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Pacific Sardine

Landings | Management and Regulations | Projects and Publications

Pacific sardine. CDFW file photo.

The Pacific sardine (Sardinops sagax caerulea) is a small pelagic species found throughout the Pacific Ocean. They are active filter feeders that consume various forms of plankton such as fish larvae and crustaceans. During World War I, commercial fishermen targeted Pacific sardine to fill an increased demand for nutritious food that could be canned and easily carried onto battlefields. During the early days of the fishery, sardines were primarily canned for human consumption or reduced to fish meal and oil. Today they are mainly used for human consumption and pet food, or exported for use as tuna feed in international aquaculture operations. Landings of sardine have historically fluctuated due to changing environmental conditions. Pacific sardine are actively managed by the Pacific Fishery Management Council under the Coastal Pelagic Species Fishery Management Plan.

Landings

Management and Regulations

Projects and Publications