They should be coming in from the Pacific ocean into the Sacramento river drainage in April, working there way upstream to spawn.
They were introduced from the East Coast of America in 1871 into the Sacramento river where they thrived.
They travel in schools averaging around 3 pounds each and going up to 7 pounds on occasion.
You can find them holding in runs on the Sacramento, Feather, Yuba and American rivers.
After World War II they became popular as a game fish on both the Atlantic and Pacific coastal rivers.
Anglers dip net for them, fish for them with spinning tackle and fly rods too.
They are a bony fish so many prefer to just catch and release them.
You can grind their raw flesh up in a meat grinder to cut up the bones into shorter pieces.
Some pressure cook them to soften the bones.
Others pickle them which softens the bones.
Smoking them is a very popular method too.
Some like to cook and eat their eggs called roe.
A great way to get started is to hire a local fishing guide who specializes in America Shad in our Nor Cal river.
April, May and June are usually the months that we see them in our rivers.
Shad like bite small bright artificial lures and flies plus they fight well when hooked and like to jump in the air too.
Morning and evening seem to be the best times to catch the silver fighters.
Last spring, 2019, we had a very good run of American Shad into the lower American river.
If you need any help going after these fun local fish just contact me.