Don't think I've every had pilchards
I buy tinned sardines and mackerel, must look out for pilchards
Oh yes you have;
Are pilchards the same as sardines?
The terms "sardine" and "pilchard" are not precise, and what is meant depends on the region. The United Kingdom's Sea Fish Industry Authority, for example, classifies sardines as young pilchards. One criterion suggests fish shorter in length than 15 cm (6 in) are sardines, and larger fish are pilchards.
They are the same fish; Clupea harenges
to a biologist
they grow up to 30cm in length and change their name depending on their size, according to the EU Fisheries Commission, they are also least endangered. As small one they are sardines, then thy grow into pilchards, then as adults (and they live for up to 12 years) they are herrings - and of course can then be converted into kippers, or bloaters,,,,
They are NOT the same fish as mackeral or anchovies.
Marine biology was my life for 40+ years through diving and at Uni.