Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Echeneis naucrates, Live sharksucker, the sharksucker

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

body elongate, depth 7-12.5% SL
head disc - usually 23 plates
D & A usually 39 & 36
D, A & C tips narrowly white
pectoral pointed

Echeneis naucrates Linnaeus, 1758

Live sharksucker, Sharksucker

Body long & slender, depth 7-12.5% SL; head disc with 23 (18-28) plates, reaches over ~center of pectoral fin; jaws broad, lower jaw projecting, top jaw not protractile; simple teeth on jaws and center of roof of mouth; operculum without spines; gill rakers 1-3 + 17-18; dorsal and anal fin bases long, 2-3 times head length; dorsal rays 39 (34-42); anal rays 36 (31-41); pectorals high on body, pointed, 21-24; pelvics under pectoral base, close-set, I, 5; scales small, smooth, imbedded; tail fin bluntly straight.

Grey, white edged black stripe along side from tip of lower jaw through eye to tail fin, stripe broader at front; tips of dorsal, anal and tail fins narrowly white, more narrowly white than in E. naucratoides.

Size: reaches 100 cm.

Often see around reefs. Attaches to a variety of hosts, including sharks, rays, large fishes, turtles and whales, but frequently free-living.

Depth: 0-155 m.

Circumtropical; Nova Scotia to Uruguay.


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Salinity
  • Brackish
  • Marine
Inshore/Offshore
  • Inshore
  • Offshore
  • In & Offshore
Water Column Position
  • Mid Water
  • Near Surface
  • Water column only
Habitat
  • Estuary
  • Large fishes (billfishes, rays, sharks, etc), turtles & whales
  • Water column
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Data
  • Carnivore
  • Planktivore
  • Ectoparasite cleaner
Diet
  • Bony fishes
  • Ectoparasites
  • Zooplankton
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • Circumtropical ( Indian + Pacific + Atlantic Oceans)
Regional Endemism
  • Island (s)
  • GC non-endemic
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Extends North of GC
  • Continent
  • Extends South of GC
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Also in Brazil
Residency
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Not evaluated / Listed
CITES
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 100
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 155