Barracuda

From Academic Kids

Barracuda
Missing image
Barracuda_with_prey.jpg
Great barracuda


Great barracuda, Sphyraena barracuda, with prey
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Actinopterygii
Order:Perciformes
Family:Sphyraenidae
Genus:Sphyraena
Species

See text

The barracuda (Sphyraenus, family Sphyraenidae) is a ray-finned fish notable for its large size (up to 1.8 m or 5 ft) and fearsome appearance. The one genus of the family includes about 25 known species.

The barracuda body is elongated, with the lower jaw of the large mouth jutting out, and displaying prominent fang-shaped teeth. The two dorsal fins are widely separated, with the first having five spines and the second one spine and nine soft rays. The lateral line is prominent.

They are caught as food and game fish (however, barracuda flesh can occasionally contain ciguatera toxin).

Contents

Behavior

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Diver_in_school_of_barracudas.jpg
Scuba diver inside a school of Chevron barracudas. in Koh Tao

Barracudas occur solitairy and schools around reefs, but also 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 to overrun their prey, sacrificing maneuverability.

There have been a few isolated cases where barracudas attacked a human thinking that part of it was a fish, but these incidents are extremely rare; especially when considering the number of times that barracudas and humans meet each other.

While barracudas sometimes follow snorkelers and scuba divers across the reef, which can make one feel uncomfortable, there exist no substantiated reports of unprovoked attacks on divers. Known incidents generally involve (spear) fishing or hand feeding.

Distribution

Barracudas occur in subtropical and tropical oceans worldwide.

Species

Missing image
School_of_barracuda.JPG
A school of Chevron barracudas in Bora Bora.
  • Sphyraena acutipinnis (Sharpfin barracuda)
  • Sphyraena afra (Guinean barracuda)
  • Sphyraena argentea (Pacific barracuda)
  • Sphyraena barracuda (Great barracuda)
  • Sphyraena borealis (Northern sennet)
  • Sphyraena chinensis (Striped barracuda)
  • Sphyraena chrysotaenia (Yellowstripe barracuda)
  • Sphyraena ensis (Vicuda or Mexican barracuda)
  • Sphyraena flavicauda (Yellowtail barracuda)
  • Sphyraena forsteri (Bigeye barracuda)
  • Sphyraena guachancho (Guachanche barracuda)
  • Sphyraena helleri (Heller's barracuda)
  • Sphyraena idiastes (Pelican barracuda)
  • Sphyraena japonica (Japanese barracuda)
  • Sphyraena jello (Pickhandle barracuda or Indo-malaysian barracuda)
  • Sphyraena langsar (Shortjawed barracuda)
  • Sphyraena lucasana (Lucas barracuda)
  • Sphyraena novae-hollandiae (Shortfinned barracuda)
  • Sphyraena obtusata (Obtuse barracuda)
  • Sphyraena picudilla (Southern sennet)
  • Sphyraena pinguis (Red or Brown barracuda)
  • Sphyraena putnamae (Sawtooth barracuda)
  • Sphyraena qenie (Chevron or Blackfin barracuda)
  • Sphyraena sphyraena (European barracuda)
  • Sphyraena tome
  • Sphyraena viridensis (Yellowmouth barracuda)
  • Sphyraena waitii

External link

  • FishBase info (http://www.fishbase.org/Summary/FamilySummary.cfm?ID=360) for Sphyraenidae
  • Sphyraenidae entry on Animal Diversity Web (http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/classification/Sphyraenidae.html)

ja:カマス nl:Barracuda

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