Evaluation of the activity of metabolic enzymes is often used to asses metabolic capacity at the tissue level, but the amount of regional variability within a tissue in an individual fish of a given species is frequently unknown. The activities of four enzymes (citrate synthase (CS), phosphofructokinase, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), and ??-hydroxyacyl coenzyme A dehydrogenase (HOAD) were assayed in red and white muscle at 10 sites along the body of adult American shad (Alosa sapidissima). Red and white muscle HOAD and white muscle CS and LDH varied significantly, generally increasing posteriorly. Maximal variation occurs in red muscle HOAD (~450%) and white muscle LDH (~60%) activity. Differences between the sexes also vary with sampling location. This study suggests that the variability in enzyme activity may be linked to functional differences in the muscle at different locations, and also provides guidelines for sample collection in this species.