Latin name

Sphyraena barracuda

Other names

Сuda, sea pike, giant sea pike; French: barracuda, brochet de mer; Hawaiian: kaku, kupala; Japanese: onikamasu; Portuguese: barracuda, bicuda; Spanish: barracuda, picuda.


The large barracuda is long and slender, with a large, pointed head and large eyes. The dorsal fins are widely separated, the first dorsal fin has five spines, the second has 10 soft rays. The large lower jaw has large, pointed fangs. It also has a bluish-gray or greenish-gray body coloration over the lateral line and a silvery-white belly. Several irregular black spots are scattered along the sides of the body, especially toward the tail. Juveniles have one dark stripe on each side, which turns into blotches as they grow. A large barracuda has 18 to 22 diagonal dark stripes above the lateral line.


Tropical waters of the Atlantic, Indian and western Pacific Oceans. In the Western Atlantic, from Massachusetts and Bermuda in the north to southern Brazil in the south. In the East Atlantic, from the Canary Islands to Angola. In the Indian Ocean, everywhere, including the Red Sea as far south as Natal and Western Australia. In the western tropical Pacific south from the Ryukyu Islands to Northern Australia, east to Hawaii and the islands of Oceania.


Young barracudas live in coastal seagrass beds, while adults live from coastal channels to the open ocean. They are found in bays, bays, lagoons and shallow mangrove islands, as well as around reefs, shipwrecks, jetties, sand or grassy shoals and coastal rivers where salt and fresh water mix. They prefer shallow waters.


The large barracuda is known to reach 106 pounds and 61⁄2 feet in length, with an average weight of 5 to 20 pounds.

Life history and Behavior

Young barracuda weighing less than 3 pounds usually live in shallow waters such as harbors and coastal lagoons until they become adults. Small barracudas gather in groups, while larger ones live alone. Curiosity is a trait of all barracudas, and they will follow divers and snorkelers.

Food and feeding habits

A typical predator, it eats a variety of fish and invertebrates, anything available in its habitat. They are attracted by glitter and movement, feeding more by sight than by smell.


Not studied

Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Family Sphyraenidae
Genus Sphyraena
Species S. barracuda
Conservation status Least Concern
Habitat Littoral
Life span, years 14
Maximum body weight, kg 46.72
Maximum length, cm 300
Sailing speed, m/s 12
Threat to people Poisonous
Way of eating Predator

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