Anchovy: Quick Facts

Scientific name: Engraulis australis

Other names: kokowhaawhaa, korowhaawhaa (Maori), Southern anchovy

Ranking: D  (Green - Concerns)


Best Fish Guide: Anchovy

Ranking: D (Green - concerns)

Alternative choice: Best choice, no alternative

Description: This small, fast growing, but short-lived schooling fish is common in coastal waters, particularly in sheltered bays. It is often found in mixed schools with pilchards and sprats and occurs around the world. Jointly with pilchards and sprats, anchovy has the best ecological ranking of any commercial fishery in New Zealand.

Ecological concerns: There are no estimates of the size of its sustainable yield, a lack of basic biological information on natural mortality, growth or stock structure, limited research and lack of a management plan. There is also concern that reducing their population could disrupt marine food chains as it is a prey item for many other fish species.

Economic value: New Zealand and exports of under $100,000 per year.

Best option: Anchovy are one of the best New Zealand seafood choices.



Biology and risk of overfishing (score A)
Status and sustainability of fish catches (score D)
Impact of fishing method and protected, threatened and endangered species capture (score D and A)
Management and management unit (score E and B)

For a full ecological assessment, click here