Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

Español  Contact

Species: Pristis pectinata, Smalltooth Sawfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

saw 25-26 (22-29) pairs teeth
D1 origin over pelvic origin
C no lower lobe

Pristis pectinata Latham, 1794

Smalltooth Sawfish

Body depressed at front, shark-like; head, pectorals and front of body in a large diamond shaped disc, ending in an elongate, flattened snout equipped with a row of 22-29 large, flattened teeth along each side; eyes and spiracles on top of head; mouth wide, underneath; gills under head; 2 large, shark-like, widely separated dorsal fins, origin of first dorsal fin over pelvic fin origin; pectorals triangular, attached to rear of head; no anal fin; tail large, stout, fin broad, with no lower lobe; body covered with flat denticles.

Dark grey to golden brown, whitish on ventral surface.

Grows to about 554 cm and estimated weight of ~400 kg.

Inhabits shallow bays and estuaries, also entering rivers.

Depth: 0-88 m.

North Carolina to Argentina.

High Resolution Map Download

Species Data Create Report Export as Word File Export as Excel File
  • Brackish
  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Beach
  • Estuary
  • Freshwater
  • Mud
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Live birth
  • No pelagic larva
  • No pelagic phase
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Extends North of GC
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Critically endangered
  • Listed
  • Appendix I
  • Listed
Length Max
  • 554
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 88