The Barracuda is an impressive fish with a fearsome
appearance and size, from the family Sphyraenidae and the
genus Sphyraena. They are a saltwater ocean only fish that
are found in subtropical and tropical regions of the world.
Barracudas can reach up to six feet (just under two meters)
in length and a foot (more than thirty centimeters) wide in
Barracudas have ray-fins and are covered with small smooth
scales. They are a long fish with compact bodies and
powerful jaws. The lower jaw sticks out farther than the top
jaw, and they have very strong fang-like teeth that are set
in sockets in the roof of the mouth. The teeth are also
varied in size and length within the mouth.
The head of the Barracuda is long, large and pointed. They
look similar to a pike. The gills are covered with small
scales instead of spines like some other fish. They have two
dorsal fins that are widely spaced. The first of these
dorsal fins has five spines and the second has one spine and
nine soft rays.
The rear fin and the second dorsal fin are equal in size.
They are located so that the rear fin is just below the
second dorsal fin. From head to tail the lateral line
prominently extends. The Barracuda has a large swim bladder.
Usually the Barracuda is a gray or dark green with chalky
white colored scales on its underside. The colors can vary
on the sides. Sometimes the Barracuda can have crossbars or
black spots on either side that are darker than its
coloration. The fins can be dusky or yellowish.
Barracudas eat fish of all types and sometimes will even
hoard fish in shallow water until they are done digesting a
full meal. A group of Barracudas together are called a
battery. Barracudas hunt their food by using ambushing
techniques. They rely on their surprise tactics and a burst
of speed to catch their prey.
Barracudas are generally found around reefs and may be seen
singly or in groups. They also can be seen in the open ocean
although this is less common.
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