1A small marine fish of the herring family, widely caught for food and fish products.
- Sprattus and other genera, family Clupeidae: several species, in particular S. sprattus of European inshore waters.
- However, they are now firmly identified, at least so far as Britain is concerned, as the fry of various fish of the herring family, but mainly of the herring itself and the sprat.
- Others say it's the healthy levels of sprat and herring which are providing them with plenty of food.
- Clupeid fish, like herring, anchovies, and sprats, can detect sound frequencies up to around 40 kilohertz, way beyond the hearing range of most other fish.
1.1Any of a number of small fishes that resemble the true sprats, e.g., the sand eel.
- ‘Wild puffins normally eat live whitebait, sprats and sand eels which they dive in the sea for,’ said Mrs Platts.
- The crabs, which are natural scavengers, are being fed with dead sand eels and sprats.
Late 16th century: variant of Old English sprot, of unknown origin.
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