Great barracuda

Sphyraena barracuda

Family Sphyraenidae - barracudas

Distinguishing
Characteristics
Body elongate, slightly compressed; green to gray on back, silvery on sides and below; blotches on posterior lower sides; lower jaw projecting beyond upper jaw; large vertical teeth; area between eyes flat or concave; upper jaw reaches to or beyond anterior eye margin; dorsal, anal and caudal fins dark with white tips; caudal fin double emarginate with pale tips on each lobe; no fleshy tip on lower jaw; pectoral fin reaches to or beyond pelvic fin origin.
Similar Species
Guaguanche have backward directed teeth, lighter fins with dark tips, light golden longitudinal stripe, no blotches; in the northern sennet, the upper jaw does not reach the anterior margin of eye and it has a fleshy tip on lower jaw.
Habitat
Gulf, common around platforms, wrecks and reefs
Maximum Size
200 cm (6 1/2 ft), common to 130 cm (4 1/4 ft)
Fin Element Counts
D. V+I,9; A. II,7-8 (explain)
Other Common Names
Previous Scientific Names
Comments
Marketed commercially, but the may have ciguatera toxin in flesh; deaths have been associated with eating this fish. Underwater photo courtesy of TPWD Art
State size/bag limits