Sharksucker

Echeneis naucrates

Family Echeneidae - remoras

Distinguishing
Characteristics
Body elongate, head flattened dorsoventrally, rest of body round; large oval sucking disk on top of head, disk much larger than head; lower jaw protruding, mouth supra-terminal; fleshy tab on lower jaw; color gray or brown, light below; usually with dark horizontal stripe mid-body bordered in white; dorsal and anal fins long, concave in profile, black with white anteriors and white tips, white anterior fade in older fish; tail in young lanceolate with middle rays longest, tail more truncate in adults.
Similar Species
Similar in shape to cobias, but remoras are the only fishes with sucking disks on their head. The remora, Remora remora, have stouter bodies, no stripes, shorter and rounded dorsal and anal fins and forked tails in young, becoming emarginate to truncate in adults.
Habitat
Gulf and bays, attach to other fishes
Maximum Size
110 cm (3 1/2 ft), common to 66 cm (26 in)
Fin Element Counts
D. 33-34; A. 31-41 (explain)
Other Common Names
Previous Scientific Names
Comments
Not host-specific, attaches to a variety of fishes.
State size/bag limits