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Video: School of Fish Beneath Chicago's Harbors

Two Shedd Aquarium Great Lakes researchers – Solomon David and Phil Willink – found a huge school of fish underneath Chicago's harbors last week. The fish are gizzard shad, a type of herring and major schooling or forage fish, often seen in large groups.

David is a fish ecologist at the Shedd who studies Great Lakes migratory fishes.

"My colleague Phil and I make routine visits to Burnham Harbor to look at what fishes are moving in and out of the harbor," said David. "One day last week, we were out there and saw a school of shad. The next day, we went out with a GoPro camera and a long pole, and we saw thousands of shad. It's something people wouldn't expect to see right outside their back door so we wanted to capture some of it on film."

Watch the video below:

David says shad are widespread throughout the Eastern United States and native to the Great Lakes as well.

"The shad schools are highly mobile. They can move fast and split into multiple groups. We don't see them all the time because it is a flash in the pan situation and then they're gone," said David. “We wanted to post this video online to show people the cool stuff going on with freshwater fish right here in local waters. We can make them aware of what’s going on nearby, and hopefully from that, they will care about what’s going on there too.”

You can also check out gizzard shad in the At Home on the Great Lakes gallery at Shedd Aquarium.