Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Tylosurus crocodilus crocodilus, Hound needlefish, Houndfish needlefish, the Houndfish

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

beak short, straight
D & A high
juv teeth point forwards
pectoral & pelvic long

Tylosurus crocodilus crocodilus (Péron & Lesueur in Lesueur, 1821)

Hound needlefish, Houndfish

Body relatively robust, rounded; beak relatively short, stout and straight, with many long, pointed teeth; front teeth point forwards in juveniles; dorsal rays 21-23 (usually 22-23); anal rays 18-22; front lobes of dorsal + anal fin relatively high (9.4-18.5% and 12.5-18.1%, respectively of body length); pectoral rays 14 or 15; pectoral + pelvic fins relatively long (12.0-15.2% and 9.4-13.7%, respectively of body length); tail fin slightly forked rear edge, lower lobe longer than upper lobe; a prominent raised keel on side of tail base; 240-290 scales before dorsal fin; left gonad smaller than right gonad.

Dark bluish green above, silvery on sides; keel on the base of the tail black.

Size: to 125 cm.

Habitat: inshore, pelagic surface.

Depth: 0-10 m?

Circumtropical, with an Indo-Pacific and Atlantic subspecies: the latter from North Carolina to Brazil.

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  • Marine
  • Brackish
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Surface
  • Near Surface
  • Water column only
  • Mid Water
  • Near Bottom
  • Water column
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Estuary
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
  • Pelagic
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Zooplankton
  • Pelagic fish larvae
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Pelagic larva
  • Data
  • Benthic
Global Endemism
  • Transatlantic (East+West Atlantic)
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • All species.
Regional Endemism
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • All species..
  • Also in Brazil
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Extends North of GC
  • Continent
  • Extends South of GC
  • Island (s)
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Least concern
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 125
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 10