You are viewing this Taxon as classified by:

Articles on this page are available in 1 other language: Chinese (Simplified) (4) (learn more)

Overview

Brief Summary

The Great Barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda) is found in warm waters nearly worldwide. Slight changes in water temperature can bring subtropical fishes such as Great Barracuda northward (e.g., they may show up in numbers off southern California when water temperature increases from an average of around 15° C to 16° or 17° C). Great Barracuda, which may reach 2 m and 48 kg in size, are greenish gray above and whitish below, with many irregular small black blotches on the lower side. 18-22 diagonal dark bars are often evident on the upper side. The caudal fin is dark with white tips. There are 75-87 lateral line scales. Young fish have a dark stripe on the side, which breaks into dark squarish blotches as the fish grows. Markings differ sufficiently among individuals that they can be used to distinguish individuals in behavioral or other studies (Wilson et al. 2006). The fusiform (torpedo-shaped) body, with a large caudal (tail) fin and posteriorly positioned dorsal and anal fins, allows barracuda to capture prey with a sudden burst of speed. Young fish live in inshore seagrass beds, but adults range from inshore channels to open ocean. Although Giant Barracuda have a well-deserved reputation as fierce predators, attacks on humans are not common (and very rarely fatal) and generally involve unusual circumstances such as wading or swimming in turbid water while wearing bright objects or carrying speared fish. In at least some regions, the flesh of some barracuda, especially larger ones, is quite poisonous as a result of concentrating toxins originating from certain marine dinoflagellates farther down the food chain. (Robins and Ray 1986; Moyle 1993; Tosteson 2004)

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Shapiro, Leo

Source: EOL Rapid Response Team

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

WhyReef - Lifestyle

You can usually find the great barracuda swimming near the surface of the water. Adults usually swim alone, especially at night, but at other times you can find both young and adult barracuda swimming in schools. A school is when many fish swim together. Sometimes hundreds or even thousands of barracuda will swim together, but this is rare. Barracuda attack almost anything, even if they eat only a little of it. They have been known to attack humans and cause serious injuries, but only if we bother them.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© WhyReef

Source: WhyReef EOL content

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Comprehensive Description

Sphyraena barracuda (Edwards, 1771)

Materials

Type status: Other material. Occurrence: catalogNumber: CIRR-301 ; recordedBy: Salvador Zarco Perello ; individualCount: 3 ; Location: continent: America; country: Mexico ; stateProvince: Yucatan; locality: Madagascar Reef ; verbatimDepth: 4 m; verbatimLatitude: 781272.611854; verbatimLongitude: 2373443.69326; verbatimCoordinateSystem: UTM 15N; verbatimSRS: WGS84; decimalLatitude: 21.441469 ; decimalLongitude: -90.286290 ; Event: samplingProtocol: Photosampling ; eventDate: 28/9/2007 ; Record Level: collectionID: YUC-PEC_239-01-64; institutionCode: UMDI-SISAL ; collectionCode: CIRR

Distribution

Worldwide.

  • Zarco Perello, Salvador, Moreno Mendoza, Rigoberto, Simoes, Nuno (2014): Checklist of Fishes from Madagascar Reef, Campeche Bank, Mexico. Biodiversity Data Journal 2, 1100: 1100-1100, URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/BDJ.2.e1100
Public Domain

Plazi

Source: Plazi.org

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Description

  Common names: barracuda (English), barracuda (Espanol), picuda (Espanol)
 
Sphyraena barracuda 1771)


Great barracuda


Body very elongate, robust, cylindrical at the front; head long with a long pointed snout; large protractile mouth with a distinctly protruding lower jaw; jaws and roof of mouth with many long sharp-edged teeth of unequal sizes; two widely separated dorsal fins (V + I, 8); small pectorals, 11-13 rays; pelvics I, 5, small, origin under pectoral fins, before first dorsal fin; anal fins small, II, 8, similar to and under 2nd  dorsal; a forked tail; with central lobes; a well-developed, straight lateral line; small smooth scales,  75-85 on lateral line.

Mid-grey above, paler below, ~ 20 oblique dark bars on back, extending below lateral line at rear; dorsals, tail and anal fin blackish, with white contrasting tips; body with scattered irregular black blotches.


Size: 200 cm.

Habitat: coastal and oceanic, nearbottom to surface.


Depth: 0-25 m.

Atlantic and Indo-central Pacific; vagrant at the Galapagos and western Panama.
 
    
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Biology

Found predominantly at or near the surface (Ref. 6949, 48637). Juvenile occurs among mangroves, estuaries and shallow sheltered inner reef areas; adult occurs in a wide range of habitats from murky inner harbors to open seas. Diurnal and solitary, but can also be found in small aggregations. Feeds on fishes, cephalopods and sometimes on shrimps (Ref. 9626, 48637). Sold fresh. Utilized also dried or salted (Ref. 9987). Although this species is ciguatoxic elsewhere throughout its range, it has not been reported to be poisonous in the eastern Atlantic (Ref. 6949, 48637). Rarely attacks humans, usually with one quick, fierce strike, which, although serious, is rarely fatal. The world's record on hook and line is a 5.5-ft. fish taken in the Bahamas that weighed 103 lbs. (Ref. 13442).
  • Daget, J. 1986 Sphyraenidae. p. 350-351. In J. Daget, J.-P. Gosse and D.F.E. Thys van den Audenaerde (eds.) Check-list of the freshwater fishes of Africa (CLOFFA). ISNB, Brussels; MRAC, Tervuren; and ORSTOM, Paris. Vol. 2. (Ref. 4339)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

The body of Sphyraena barracuda is elongate to slightly compressed with small, cycloid scales. The head is long and pointed with a large, nearly horizontal jaw fitted with variably-sized flattened or conical canine teeth that extend to the roof of the mouth. Two short dorsal fins are widely separated, with the first located opposite or directly behind the pelvic fins, and the second opposite the anal fin. Usual fin ray counts are as follows: 1st dorsal = 5 strong spines, 2nd dorsal = 1 spine and 9 soft rays, anal = 2 spines and 7-9 rays, pectoral = 1 spine and 5 soft rays (Russell 2002). Young S. barracuda are characterized by a longitudinal dark stripe down the side which breaks into black bars over time, remaining visible in some adults. Overall adult coloration is gray to silver with a green to blue cast above and white below. The caudal fin is black with white tips and anterior lobes near the fork. Although coloration and pattern change, Wilson et al. (2006) found that S. barracuda retain natural markings over prolonged periods of time, which can aid in distinguishing individuals in a population.
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

WhyReef - Fun Facts

A vicious predator, the great barracuda is one of the scariest looking fish on the reef. You can find it swimming with its mouth open, showing off its long knife-like teeth, which it uses to slice large fish in half so it can eat them! If it is hunting fish near the bottom of the reef, it can darken its skin color to blend in and catch prey by surprise. This strategy is one example of cryptic coloration—the ability of many animals to use their skin color to blend in to their surroundings and remain unseen.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© WhyReef

Source: WhyReef EOL content

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Distribution

Sphyraena barracuda, commonly known as great barracuda, inhabit nearly all warm seas (Blaber 1997). They are found in the tropical regions of the Indo-Pacific, and Atlantic oceans, with an absence only from the Eastern Pacific (Lieske and Myers 1999).They have been found in the Red Sea and as far as the Bermudas in the Western Atlantic. They have been seen as far north as Massachusetts (Beebe and Tee-Van 1933).

Biogeographic Regions: indian ocean (Native ); atlantic ocean (Native ); pacific ocean (Native )

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Indo-Pacific: Red Sea and east coast of Africa to Hawaii and the Marquesas and Tuamoto islands. Western Atlantic: Massachusetts (USA), Bermuda, and throughout the Caribbean Sea to Brazil (Ref. 9626). Eastern Atlantic: Sierra Leone, Côte d'Ivoire, Togo, Nigeria, Senegal (Ref. 6949), Mauritania (Ref. 5377), St. Paul's Rocks (Ref. 13121), and São Tomé Island (Ref. 34088).
  • Daget, J. 1986 Sphyraenidae. p. 350-351. In J. Daget, J.-P. Gosse and D.F.E. Thys van den Audenaerde (eds.) Check-list of the freshwater fishes of Africa (CLOFFA). ISNB, Brussels; MRAC, Tervuren; and ORSTOM, Paris. Vol. 2. (Ref. 4339)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Western Atlantic: Massachusetts (USA), Bermuda, and throughout the Caribbean Sea to Brazil
  • North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© WoRMS for SMEBD

Source: World Register of Marine Species

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Zoogeography

See Map (including site records) of Distribution in the Tropical Eastern Pacific 
 
Global Endemism: All species, TEP non-endemic, Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans), "Transpacific" (East + Central &/or West Pacific), All Pacific (West + Central + East), East Pacific + Atlantic (East +/or West), Transisthmian (East Pacific + Atlantic of Central America), East Pacific + all Atlantic (East+West)

Regional Endemism: All species, Eastern Pacific non-endemic, Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) non-endemic, Continent + Island (s), Continent, Island (s)

Residency: Vagrant

Climate Zone: Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

The range of S. barracuda is nearly circumtropical, encompassing the warm waters of most oceans. The species is rarely found in northern areas where winter temperatures dip below 20 °C for extended periods of time. However, some individuals have been found in the cooler waters off the coast of the northeast United States, South Africa and Japan (de Sylva 1963). On the east coasts of North, Central and South America, the range of the great barracuda extends from Massachusetts to southern Brazil (Robins et al 1986). Barracuda, especially juveniles, are found throughout the lagoon in mangrove and seagrass habitats (Fah 1976) where food and shelter are prominent. However, the distribution of the species in the India River Lagoon may be linked in part to temperature. A study conducted by Kupschus & Tremain (2001) showed that the majority of fish collected were alongside other tropical and subtropical species at the southern end of the lagoon.
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Circumglobal in tropical and subtropical seas (including Red Sea, Madagascar, Mascarenes, Hawaiian Islands), but except not in Eastern Pacific (waifs reaching Galapagos Islands).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Depth

Depth Range (m): 0 (S) - 25 (S)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Morphology

Sphyraena barracuda is a long silvery fish with two widely separate dorsal fins, characteristic of its family, Sphyraenidae.They have large scales and a pointed head with a large mouth and long knife-like teeth (Lieske and Myers 1999).Great barracuda have a large gape (Paterson 2000). They can reach up to 2 meters in length (Grosvenor 1978). Many fisherman used to think that barracudas were closely related to pikes because of the similarity in their body form. Sphyraena barracuda has a lower jaw projecting which is helpful in biting. They are a grayish brown above and silvery below which is quite universal throughout their geographic range. They often have dark ink-like spots that are arranged in no pattern on their sides. The young have dark crossbars on their backs and blotches on their sides. The young also have a soft dorsal fin and the anal and caudal fins can be blackish (Beebe and Tee-Van 1933). Males and females are indistinguishable to humans (Paterson 2000).

Range mass: 0 to 0 kg.

Average mass: 40 kg.

Other Physical Features: bilateral symmetry

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Dorsal spines (total): 6; Dorsal soft rays (total): 9; Analspines: 1; Analsoft rays: 10
  • Myers, R.F. 1991 Micronesian reef fishes. Second Ed. Coral Graphics, Barrigada, Guam. 298 p. (Ref. 1602)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Size

Length max (cm): 200.0 (S)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Size

Maximum size: 2000 mm TL
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Max. size

200 cm TL (male/unsexed; (Ref. 7251)); max. published weight: 50.0 kg (Ref. 6949)
  • De Sylva, D.P. 1990 Sphyraenidae. p. 860-864. In J.C. Quero, J.C. Hureau, C. Karrer, A. Post and L. Saldanha (eds.) Check-list of the fishes of the eastern tropical Atlantic (CLOFETA). JNICT, Lisbon; SEI, Paris; and UNESCO, Paris. Vol. 2. (Ref. 6949)
  • Robins, C.R. and G.C. Ray 1986 A field guide to Atlantic coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 354 p. (Ref. 7251)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Adult S. barracuda commonly reach 2m, with a maximum reported length of 2.3m (Russell 2002). The maximum age of barracuda is unknown, but the typical lifespan may often exceed 14 years (de Sylva 1963).
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Diagnostic Description

Distinguished by the double emarginate tail fin with pale tips on each lobe, and (usually) the presence of a few scattered black blotches on the lower sides (Ref. 1602). Top of head between eyes flat or concave; mouth large (Ref. 26938).Description: Characterized further by silvery body color; dorsal and caudal fin lobes with large black patches; absence of gill rakers (rough platelets present on gill arches, without spinules); erect and contiguous teeth; emarginate caudal fin with two rounded lobes in middle of posterior margin; greatest depth of body 6.0-8.2 in SL (Ref. 90102).
  • Myers, R.F. 1991 Micronesian reef fishes. Second Ed. Coral Graphics, Barrigada, Guam. 298 p. (Ref. 1602)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Type Information

Type for Sphyraena barracuda
Catalog Number: USNM 49693
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes
Preparation: Illustration
Collector(s): United States Fish Commission (USFC)
Locality: Hawaiian Islands, Hawaii, United States, Pacific
  • Type:
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Fishes

Source: National Museum of Natural History Collections

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Look Alikes

Approximately 26 species of Sphyraena can be found in tropical and warm temperate waters worldwide. The range of S. barracuda overlaps with that of the guaguanche, S. guachancho, the northern sennet, S. borealis, and the southern sennet, S. picudilla (Russell 2002 & Robins et al 1986). However, it should be noted that S. borealis and S. picudilla may be synonymous. As adults, S. barracuda is the largest of these species and can be further distinguished by dark splotches or bars usually visible on the upper side and the number of scales along the lateral line. Adults also have characteristic lobes on the anterior margin of the caudal fin (Russell 2002) and lack the fleshy appendage located on the lower jaw of other species in the region (Robins et al. 1986).
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

Adult great barracudas live in and around the edges of coral reefs. They tend to avoid brackish water unless they are getting ready to spawn (Paterson 2000). Post-larvae live on the margins and in the estuaries where they are protected. When they get large enough to protect themselves, they will move out into the open ocean and then to the margins of the coral reefs. These barracudas occur in clear water (Blaber 1997).

Great barracudas prefer water temperatures between 74F and 82F, although they have been found in much colder water (Paterson 2000).

Aquatic Biomes: reef ; coastal

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

nektonic
  • North-West Atlantic Ocean species (NWARMS)
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© WoRMS for SMEBD

Source: World Register of Marine Species

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Environment

reef-associated; brackish; marine; depth range 1 - 100 m (Ref. 6949), usually 3 - 30 m (Ref. 40849)
  • De Sylva, D.P. 1990 Sphyraenidae. p. 860-864. In J.C. Quero, J.C. Hureau, C. Karrer, A. Post and L. Saldanha (eds.) Check-list of the fishes of the eastern tropical Atlantic (CLOFETA). JNICT, Lisbon; SEI, Paris; and UNESCO, Paris. Vol. 2. (Ref. 6949)
  • Gasparini, J.L. and S.R. Floeter 2001 The shore fishes of Trindade Island, western South Atlantic. J. Nat. Hist. 35:1639-1656. (Ref. 40849)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Depth range based on 339 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 229 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 1936
  Temperature range (°C): 3.468 - 29.061
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.099 - 18.136
  Salinity (PPS): 32.183 - 37.096
  Oxygen (ml/l): 3.731 - 6.133
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.046 - 1.175
  Silicate (umol/l): 0.567 - 15.017

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 1936

Temperature range (°C): 3.468 - 29.061

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.099 - 18.136

Salinity (PPS): 32.183 - 37.096

Oxygen (ml/l): 3.731 - 6.133

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.046 - 1.175

Silicate (umol/l): 0.567 - 15.017
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Depth: 0 - 100m.
Recorded at 100 meters.

Habitat: pelagic.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© FishWise Professional

Source: FishWise Professional

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Salinity: Marine, Brackish

Inshore/Offshore: Inshore, Inshore Only

Water Column Position: Near Surface, Mid Water, Near Bottom, Water column only

Habitat: Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom), Estuary, Mangrove, Water column

FishBase Habitat: Pelagic
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Trophic Strategy

Great barracuda eat other fish. They are piscivorous at all ages. Their large teeth are quite useful for this purpose. They have a large gape which allows them to feed on very large fish by chopping them in half. They eat what they can catch using their combination of a sit-in-wait and active predator style. As juveniles, these fish compete with needlefishes and small snapper for food. This consists of killifishes, herrings, sardines, gobies, silversides, anchovies small mullets, and lizardfishes to name a few. As the fish get older and bigger, they may compete with larger fish like mackerel, or even dolphins, depending on their habitat (Paterson 2000).

Sphyraena barracuda will feed on both bottom-dwelling species as well as species of the higher water column (Paterson 2000).

They have the narrow head-on profile and the silvery color which reduces their visibility to prey. It has been observed that great barracudas herd schools of fish into shallow water and guard them. They will do this until their last meal has been digested and they are hungry again (Norman 1958).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Found predominantly at or near the surface (Ref. 6949). Juveniles occur among mangroves, estuaries and shallow sheltered inner reef areas; adults occur in a wide range of habitats from murky inner harbors to open seas. Feeds on fishes, cephalopods and sometimes on shrimps (Ref. 9626). Feeds during the day as well as at night (diurnal and nocturnal). Juveniles prefer brackishwater areas, bays and stream mouths. Piscivore (Ref. 33499, 57616).
  • Myers, R.F. 1991 Micronesian reef fishes. Second Ed. Coral Graphics, Barrigada, Guam. 298 p. (Ref. 1602)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Partner Web Site: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Barracudas employ ram strike feeding, quickly lunging to force prey to into the jaws where sharp teeth and head shakes shear it into manageable pieces (Grubich et al. 2007, Porter & Motta 2004). The diet of S. barracuda consists mainly of schooling fishes, however studies of gut contents in both juveniles and adults have revealed solitary fishes and small numbers of crustaceans, mollusks and plant material (de Sylva 1963 & Fahs 1976). Prey selection is indiscriminate and determined by the mouth length of the barracuda, but certain prey items are found more frequently. In Florida, approximately 70% of the diet of juvenile S. barracuda is comprised of gobies, herrings, sardines and silversides (de Sylva 1963). In the Indian River Lagoon, the dominant prey item of young barracuda is the bay anchovy, Anchoa mitchilli (Fah 1976). Nearshore and coral reef fishes such as ballyhoo, triggerfishes and mullet are the primary prey of adult barracuda (de Sylva 1963). Predators: The speed and size of adult S. barracuda allows for few predators. However, juveniles and small adults have been reported in the guts of the goliath grouper, Epinephelus itajara, the dolphinfish, Coryphaena hippurus and several species of tuna (de Sylva, 1963). Habitats: Juvenile barracuda are commonly found in estuaries where they feed and take shelter in seagrass beds and among mangrove prop roots (Fah 1976). Solitary individuals or small groups of adults are typical on nearshore and coral reefs (Gudger 1918). Activity Time: Fah (1976) found that S. barracuda in the Indian River Lagoon are a diurnal species (active during the day), feeding in seagrass and mangrove habitats two hours after sunrise to about two hours before sunset. The great barracuda shares a similar diet with the northern sennet, S. borealis, which is a nocturnal feeder most active between 3:00 am and approximately two hours before sunrise. Differences in activity time between these two species are thought to be a method of niche separation to reduce competition for food resources.
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Feeding

Feeding Group: Carnivore

Diet: octopus/squid/cuttlefish, Pelagic crustacea, bony fishes
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Associations

WhyReef - Menu

Fish are the barracuda’s favorite meal. The barracuda has even been known to even eat poisonous fish and other barracuda. It will also eat shrimps and squids. Because it only eats other animals, it is a carnivore.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© WhyReef

Source: WhyReef EOL content

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Population Biology

While the great barracuda is generally a solitary species, juveniles and young adults are commonly found in seagrass beds and alongside mangrove forests. Studies conducted in the Indian River Lagoon documented a catch of 376 individuals ranging from 122 to 840 mm over a 17-month period from 1996 to 1998 (Kupschus & Tremain 2001).
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life History and Behavior

Behavior

Perception Channels: tactile ; chemical

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life Expectancy

Average lifespan

Status: captivity:
14 years.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 14 years
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Joao Pedro de Magalhaes

Source: AnAge

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Reproduction

It is still unclear about the timing and location of spawning of Sphyraena barracuda. Some research reports that they spawn in the spring. Others claim that they spawn in association with particular phases of the moon. Still others claim that great barracudas spawn throughout the year with the exception of the winter months when it is cooler. It may be that great barracudas show different spawning patterns in different areas of the world. Overall, the picture of spawning patterns in great barracudas is incomplete (Paterson 2000).

Great barracuda do not care for their fertilized eggs. They are left to drift out into the ocean and eventually take form (Paterson 2000). When the fish spawn they enter shallow waters such as estuaries. The larvae hatches and seeks shallow weedy areas on the margins of clear-water estuaries. When the larvae reach a length of about 80mm they move to the deeper waters of adjacent reed beds. At about 300mm they will move to open waters and eventually they will move out of the estuaries completely at about 500mm in length (Blaber 1997).

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 1460 days.

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male): 740 days.

Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization (External ); oviparous

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male)

Sex: male:
730 days.

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female)

Sex: female:
1460 days.

  • Blaber, S. 1997. Fish and Fisheries of Tropical Estuaries. New York: Chapman and Hall.
  • Paterson, S. 2000. "Great Barracuda" (On-line). Accessed October 31, 2000 at http://www.uga.edu/cuda/.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Reproduction for S. barracuda occurs sexually through external fertilization. Sexual maturity is reached between the second and third year for males, and the third to fourth year for females. Barracudas do not exhibit sexual dimorphism, and sex can only be determined upon examination of the gonads. Adults spawn between April and October in southern Florida (de Sylva 1963), releasing eggs and sperm into the water column. Literature detailing spawning behavior in the great barracuda is lacking. However, in similar species, females may spawn several times in one season, releasing over 500,000 eggs each time (de Sylva 1963).
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Egg Type: Pelagic, Pelagic larva
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Growth

Little is known about the embryology of S. barracuda. De Sylva (1963) documented the collection of eggs from the ovaries of females, describing them as translucent and 0.74 to 0.81mm in diameter. However, these eggs were most likely immature and all attempts to culture embryos in the laboratory were unsuccessful.
  • Bagnis, R, Chanteau, S, Chungue, E, Hurtel, JM, Yasumoto, T & A Inoue. 1980. Origins of ciguatera fish poisoning: A new dinoflagellate, Gamberdiscus toxicus Adachi and Fukuyo, definitely involved as a casual agent. Toxicon 18: 199-208.
  • De Sylva DP. 1963. Systematics and life history of the great barracuda. Univ. Miami, Coral Gables. 179 pp.
  • Fahs II RW. 1976. Feeding habits and food of the great barracuda Sphyraena barracuda in the Indian River. Master's Thesis. Florida Inst. of Technology. 36 pp.
  • Friedman, MA, Fleming, LE, Fernandez, M, Bienfang, P, Schrank, K, Dickey, R, Bottein, M, Backer, L, Ayyar, R, Weisman, R, Watkins, S, Granade, R & A Reich. 2008. Ciguatera fish poisoning: treatment, prevention and management. Mar. Drugs 6: 456-479.
  • Galloway JC. 1941. Lethal effect of the cold winter of 1939-40 on marine fishes at Key West, Florida. Copeia 1: 118-119.
  • Grubich JR, Rice AN & MW Westneat. 2008. Functional morphology of bite mechanics in the great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Zoology 111: 16-29.
  • Gudger, EW. 1918. Sphyraena barracuda; its morphology, habits and history. Pap. Tortugas Lab. 12: 53-108.
  • Kupschus, S & D Tremain. 2001. Associations between fish assemblages and environmental factors in nearshore habitats of a subtropical estuary. J. Fish. Bio. 58: 1383-1403.
  • Porter HT and PJ Motta. 2004. A comparison of strike and prey capture kinematics of three species of piscivorous fishes: Florida gar (Lepisosteus platyrhincus), redfin needlefish (Strongylura notata), and great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda). Mar. Biol. 145: 989-1000.
  • Robins CR, Ray GC, and J Douglas. 1986. A Field Guide to Atlantic Coast Fishes. The Peterson Field Guide Series. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston. 354 pp.
  • Russell, BC. 2002. Sphyraenidae. pp. 1807-1811. In: The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Volume 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae), sea turtles and marine mammals. Carpenter KE (ed.). FAO species identification guide for fishery purposes and American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists special publication no. 5. FAO, Rome. pp. 1375-2127.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© Smithsonian Marine Station at Fort Pierce

Source: Indian River Lagoon Species Inventory

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Sphyraena barracuda

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


There are 46 barcode sequences available from BOLD and GenBank.

Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.

See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.

CTCCTCATCCGAGCTGAACTAAGCCAACCTGGCTCTCTCTTGGGAGAC---GACCAGATTTACAATGTAATTGTAACGGCTCACGCCTTTGTAATAATCTTTTTCATAGTTATACCCATTATGATTGGGGGCTTTGGAAACTGACTCATTCCCTTGATA---ATTGGTGCCCCAGACATGGCATTCCCTCGAATAAACAACATAAGCTTTTGACTACTCCCTCCTTCCTTTCTATTGCTCCTCTCTTCTTCAGCTGTAGAAGCGGGGGCCGGAACAGGATGAACAGTTTATCCCCCTTTAGCTGGGAACCTAGCGCATGCAGGGGCATCTGTTGACCTA---ACCATTTTCTCCTTGCACCTAGCAGGAATTTCCTCAATCCTAGGAGCCATTAACTTTATTACTACTATCATTAACATGAAACCGGCAGCAACCTCAATGTATCAAATTCCTCTATTTGTATGGGCCGTCCTAATTACTGCTGTTCTTCTTCTTCTTTCACTCCCCGTACTAGCTGCT---GGTATTACAATGCTCCTAACAGATCGAAACCTAAACACT---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------GCT
-- end --

Download FASTA File

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Sphyraena barracuda

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 51
Specimens with Barcodes: 97
Species With Barcodes: 1
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List: Not evaluated / Listed

CITES: Not listed
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© Shorefishes of the tropical eastern Pacific online information system. www.stri.org/sftep

Source: Shorefishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific Online Information System

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Not Evaluated
  • IUCN 2006 2006 IUCN red list of threatened species. www.iucnredlist.org. Downloaded July 2006.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

WhyReef - Threats

People used to catch the great barracuda to eat, but since it has a lot of toxins in its body, it is not good to eat. In fact it’s illegal to sell the great barracuda for food in the USA. In some places people take too many fish out of the reef. The great barracuda can’t live in these places, because there is not enough food for it to eat!

Reefs are in danger, and that means so is the home of the great barracuda!

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© WhyReef

Source: WhyReef EOL content

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Great barracudas can be dangerous. This means beware, for many tourist who like to snorkel or dive in the Carribbean or in other clear waters where these fish live.

For those people who like to eat great barracudas, ciguaterra is an issue. Ciguaterra occurs more often in large fish (Grosvenor 1978). It is a debilitating illness that can result in some severe physiological changes, sometimes even death. Ciguatoxin is ingested when eating tropical and subtropical fish. Some species are more likely to be dangerous than others (Paterson 2000). Due to the danger of poison, great barracuda meat is illegal to sell (Food and Drug Administration 2000). For more information on poisoning from Sphyraena barracuda and other tropical fish, visit the Food and Drug Administrations web site at   The Seafood Product Research Center.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Great barracuda meat is tasty for some people. Very little barracuda meat is eaten in the United States, and few people like to fish them. But, for those who do, they are found to be great game fighters on light tackle (Grosvenor 1978).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Importance

fisheries: minor commercial; gamefish: yes; aquarium: public aquariums; price category: medium; price reliability: questionable: based on ex-vessel price for species in this genus
  • International Game Fish Association 1991 World record game fishes. International Game Fish Association, Florida, USA. (Ref. 4699)
  • Joannot, P. 1997 List of fishes in the Noumea aquarium. Unpublished. (Ref. 13603)
  • Rose, J.H. 1984 Sphyraenidae. In W. Fischer and G. Bianchi (eds.) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51). Vol. 4. FAO, Rome. pag. var. (Ref. 4752)
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© FishBase

Source: FishBase

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Wikipedia

Great barracuda

The great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda) also known as the giant barracuda, is a species of barracuda. Great barracudas often grow over 6 feet (1.8 m) long and are a type of ray-finned fish.

Appearance[edit]

Great barracudas are large fish. Mature specimens are usually around 60–100 cm (24–39 in) in length and weigh 2.5–9.0 kg (5.5–19.8 lb). Exceptionally large specimens can exceed 1.5 m (4.9 ft) and weigh over 23 kg (51 lb). The record-sized specimen caught on rod-and-reel weighed 46.72 kg (103.0 lb) and measured 1.7 m (5.6 ft), while an even bigger specimen measured 2 m (6.6 ft) and weighed 50 kg (110 lb).[1][2][3][4] Barracudas are elongated fish with powerful jaws. The lower jaw of the large mouth juts out beyond the upper. Barracudas possess strong, fang-like teeth that are unequal in size and set in sockets in the jaws and on the roof of the mouth. The head is quite large and is pointed and pike-like in appearance. The gill covers do not have spines and are covered with small scales. The two dorsal fins are widely separated, with the first having five spines and the second having one spine and 9 soft rays. The second dorsal fin equals the anal fin in size and is situated more or less above it. The lateral line is prominent and extends straight from head to tail. The spinous dorsal fin is situated above the pelvis. The hind end of the caudal fin is forked or concave, and it is set at the end of a stout peduncle. The pectoral fins are placed low down on the sides. The barracuda has a large swim bladder.

In general, the barracuda's coloration is dark green or a blue type coloration or grey above chalky-white below. Sometimes, a row of darker cross-bars or black spots occurs on each side. The fins may be yellowish or dark.

Great barracuda (Sphyraena barracuda) and yellowtail snapper (Ocyurus chrysurus)

Behavior[edit]

Great barracuda with prey

Barracudas appear in open seas. They are voracious predators and hunt using a classic example of lie-in-wait or ambush. They rely on surprise and short bursts of speed (up to 27 mph (43 km/h) to overrun their prey, sacrificing maneuverability. Barracudas are more or less solitary in their habits. Young and half-grown fish frequently congregate in shoals. Their diets are composed almost totally of fish of all kinds. Large barracudas, when gorged, may attempt to herd a school of prey fish in shallow water where they guard over them until they are ready for another hunt.

Barracudas and humans[edit]

Like sharks, some species of barracuda are reputed to be dangerous to swimmers. They are scavengers, and may mistake snorkellers for large predators, following them in hopes of eating the remains of their prey. Swimmers have been reported being bitten by barracuda, but such incidents are rare and possibly caused by poor visibility. Barracuda generally avoid muddy shallows, so attacks in surf are more likely to be by small sharks. Barracudas may mistake things that glint and shine for prey.[5] An incident of a barracuda jumping out of water and injuring a kayaker has been reported,[6] but a marine biologist at the University of Florida said the type of wound appeared to have rather been caused by a houndfish.

Handfeeding or touching large barracuda in general is to be avoided. Spearfishing around barracudas can also be dangerous, as they are quite capable of ripping a chunk from a wounded fish thrashing on a spear.

Diamond rings and other shiny objects have been known to catch their attention and resemble prey to them. Caution should be taken when swimming near mangrove coastlines by covering or removing such items.

While barracudas display a disconcerting habit of curiously following divers and swimmers, attacks on humans are rare. Oftentimes, an attack consists of a single strike in which the fish attempts to steal prey from a spear, or else mistakes a shiny object for a fish. While serious, attacks are almost never lethal, bites can result in lacerations and the loss of some tissue.[7]

References[edit]

Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Source: Wikipedia

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!