Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Sphyraena borealis, Sennet, Northern Sennet, Sennet Barracuda

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

dark oblique bars, +/- 2 yellow stripes
C no central lobes
top jaw ends well before eye
pectoral not reaching over pelvic
pelvic inserts under D origin
LL 107-135

Sphyraena borealis DeKay, 1842

Sennet, Northern Sennet, Sennet Barracuda

Body elongate, slender, cylindrical at the front; head long with a long pointed snout; large protractile mouth with a distinctly protruding lower jaw; top jaw not reaching under eye; jaws and roof of mouth with many long sharp-edged teeth of unequal sizes; gill rakers present as 1-2 short spines or spiny plates at angle of gill arch; two widely separated dorsal fins (V + I, 8-10); anal fin small, II, 8, similar to and under 2nd dorsal; last rays of dorsal and anal fins not distinctly longer than rays just before them; pectorals, small not reaching pelvic base nor under origin of dorsal fin; pelvics I, 5, small, inserted under or slightly behind origin of dorsal fin, much nearer base of last anal ray than to tip of lower jaw; a forked tail without central lobes; small smooth scales, 107-135 on lateral line; a well-developed, straight lateral line.

Silvery, adults with dark bars or blotches, may have 2 yellowish stripes along body; young with a series of dark elongate blotches along side; fins yellowish.

Size: 50 cm.

Habitat: coastal and on continental shelf, nearbottom to surface.

Depth: 0.2-65 m.

Canada to Argentina.

Note: S. picudilla is a synonym.

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  • Brackish
  • Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Mid Water
  • Near Bottom
  • Near Surface
  • Surface
  • Water column only
  • Water column
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Pelagic
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Continental primarily
  • 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
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 50
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 65