Sphyraena ensis

Spanish: Barracuda Mejicana, Barracuda picúa, Picuda, Picuda picúa.

The Mexican Barracuda is characterized by its overall "barracuda-like" appearance with a predominant silver coloration with black markings including a strong lateral line and chevron markings along its sides. The Mexican Barracuda has a grey caudal fin. The pelvic fins originate under the pectoral fin tips and well before the first dorsal fin. The caudal fin is deeply forked.

This fish is found in the first 50 feet of the water column, in and around reefs. It is not found on the Pacific side of the Baja California peninsula. On the eastern side of Baja it is only found between Cabo San Lucas and La Paz.

The Mexican Barracuda is found along the coast of the mainland from Guaymas south to Guatemala, but its appears to be absent from the oceanic islands. It reaches a maximum length of 5 feet, and normally range between 12 and 15 pounds in weight; the world I.F.G.A. record as of 2004 is 33.6 pounds, caught in Mexican Fishing waters.

This species is an important commercial fish in Golfo de Montijo, Panama.. It is an important food fish in Mexico, the USA (Sommer 1995), and Colombia.


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