Guide for travelling anglers in the Land of a Thousand Lakes 
Home Destinations Waters Species Fishing methods Services Fishing facts > Species > Baltic herring 
Arctic char
Baltic herring
Brown trout
Landlocked salmon
Rainbow trout
Sea trout
Other species

Baltic herring - herring of brackish water


Photo: Risto Jussila
Baltic herring (Clupea harengus membras).
Baltic herring (Clupea harengus membras).

Baltic herring is by far the most numerous species of fish found in Finland's coastal waters. Rod tackle is used to fish for Baltic herring in early summer and in autumn, when anglers pursue the fish in sounds using rigs equipped with 5 to 10 hooks specifically designed for Baltic herring. Herring fishing with a rig is free of charge.

The rig consists of small and bright, size 2–6 hooks, which are attached to a couple of centimetres long side leaders. It's also possible to attach small pieces of glitter to the hooks as attractants. In autumn, it's worth trying golden hooks. A big bright spoon used as a weight in the rig will lure Baltic herring to the spot.

Good spots include sounds and steep rocky shores, where water is 4 to 8 metres deep. Well-known sites include the Lauttasaari bridge in Helsinki, the Lillholmen drawbridge in Parainen and the Raippaluoto bridge in Vaasa.

Photo: Jari Tuiskunen 

Sometimes a school of Baltic herring can be found right below the surface, sometimes at the bottom. If you don't get any bites at the surface, you should gradually sink the rig towards the bottom. Sooner or later, the tip of the rod will start to shake.

The best season lasts for a few weeks, occurring in mid-May on the South Coast and about a month later on the latitude of Vaasa. The autumn season runs from September to October.

Baltic herring are good food fish and can be prepared into a delicious meal by frying, smoking, boiling and baking in the oven.

Photo: Risto Jussila 
Raippaluoto, Vaasa.
Raippaluoto, Vaasa.
© 2013–2024

Typical size: 50–100 g
Record catch in Finland since 2000: 0,73 kg

Additional information