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Tenualosa ilisha – Systematic position, Habit & habitat, Identifying characters, Ecological and economic importance.

Tenualosa ilisha is one of the most common fish in the South Asia region. Naturally, it is found in the coastal water of the sea but it comes to the river to spawn its eggs. In this article, we will learn 1. Identifying characters of Tenualosa ilisha, 2. Taxonomic position of Tenualosa ilisha, 3. Economic importance of Tenualosa ilisha, 4. Ecological importance of Tenualosa ilisha

Systematic position

Phylum: Chordata

    Subphylum: Vertebrata

        Class: Osteichthyes

            Oder: Clupeiformes

                 Family: Clupeidae

                    Genus: Tenualosa

                        Species: Tenualosa ilisha


Habit and Habitat

The common name of this fish is Hilsa. It is also called ilish, hilsa herring, or hilsa shad. It is a fish of both river and marine. During the breeding time, they come to the rivers and breed. It is found in the rivers and seas of Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Burma, and some other areas. It is the national fish of Bangladesh and Bangladesh is the main producer of this fish. The fish schools in the coastal water of the sea. During the breeding season, they come to the rivers and spawn their eggs. Young Hilsa return to the sea. They feed on plankton.

Tenualosa ilisha - Hilsa

Identifying characteristics of Tenualosa ilisha

1. It can grow up to 60 cm in length and weighs up to 3 kg.

2. Body laterally compressed.

3. It has 18-21 dorsal soft rays and anal soft rays but no dorsal spines.

4. Belly has 30-33 scutes.

5. Lateral line present.

6. Silver-colored body.

7. A dark blotch behind the gill opening, followed by a series of small spots along the flanks.

8. Fins are hyaline.

9. There is a distinct median notch in the upper jaw.

10. Gill rakers are fine and numerous, about 100 to 250 on the lower part of the arch.


Ecological Importance

1. The fish is marine, freshwater, brackish, pelagic-neritic, and anadromous.

2. The fish schools in coastal water of the sea.

3. They mainly feed on planktons.

4. They are used as very tasteful food for humans.


Economic Importance of Tenualosa ilisha

1. This is a very popular food amongst the people of South Asia, especially in Bangladesh and India.

2. This fish is the national fish of Bangladesh and it has a great impact on the GDP of Bangladesh. Bangladesh exports this fish in large numbers.

3. A very popular food item in the restaurants of South Asia and the Middle East.


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