They live throughout northern Europe and feed on plankton.
They are silver on their sides, with a white belly, and a greenish-brown or blue back.
They have rich tasting, delicate, lean flesh.
In France, they live in Alpine lakes, and grow up to 8 inches (20 cm) long, and (1.2 kg) in weight.
In the UK, where they are a protected fish now, they live only in two lakes (Castle Loch and Mill Loch) in Scotland, and in two lakes in Cumbria, England: Bassenthwaite and Derwentwater Lakes. The Scottish population may be extinct now, though efforts are underway (as of 2005) to reintroduce them to Scotland. In England, they only grow to be as long as a person’s thumb.
Vendace are also found in Poland, and in Finland, where the fish is called “muikku.” The Finns consider the fish’s golden-honey coloured roe a delicacy. It is sometimes referred to as “golden caviar” in English. The fish itself is often used in making the Finnish bread dish called “kalakukko.”
Vendace are also in northern Sweden (where they are called “siklöja”), Norway (called “lagesild”), Denmark ( called “heltling”), and in Iceland, where they are called “hvítfiskur.”
Can be cooked fresh, or processed into canned, smoked or pickled fish products.
Linguists speculate that the English word “vendace” may come from the French word “vandoise”, though that is the name in French of another type of fish (the Common Dace) altogether.