Great Barracuda

Sphyraena Barracuda
Great Barracuda - Marinewise © 2024 MarineWise

Quick Facts

Scientific name Sphyraena Barracuda
Other names Barracuda, Dingo-fish, Giant Barracuda, Giant Sea-pike, Short Barracuda, Small-eyed Barracuda, Striped Seapike
Size Up to 2 m (6.56 ft)
Weight Up to 50 kg (110 lb)


Habitat & AU Distribution Mangroves, estuaries, shallow/deep reefs, pelagic waters, oceanic islands
Depth Range
Great Barracuda Distribution

Interesting Info

  • The Great Barracuda is a aggressive predatory fish and can be found in shallow mangroves & flats to depths of 110 m (360 ft).
  • Barracuda are ambush hunters that can reach speeds of 43 km/h (27 mph) to catch its prey. Smaller pelagic, reef & baitfish make up its diet.
  • They are a warm to temperate water fish commonly found in subtropical oceans.
  • Estimates of lifespan are up to 14 years, with males maturing between 1 & 2 years and female between 2 & 4 years.
  • They are a popular sports fish amongst anglers.
  • The main predators of baracudda include sharks, tuna, large groper and larger predatory fish.
Species Interaction

Recreational Fishing & Reef

Great Barracuda are a highly targeted sports fish known for their aggressiveness and strong fight. They are commonly found around inshore & offshore coral & rocky reefs patrolling reef edges for prey. They can be found in small schools or solitary. Often spotted by recreational snorkelers & scuba divers.

The Australian distribution of the Great Barracuda includes waters from southern Western Australia up and around the Northern Territory, Queensland & down into northern New South Wales.

Scientific Classification

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Actinopterygii

Order: Scombriformes

Family: Sphyraenidae

Genus: Sphyraena

Species: Sphyraena barracuda

Conservation Status

Based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Great Barracuda is currently categorised as “Least Concern”(LC).

LC is the lowest category on the scale for risk with “Extinct”(EX) being the highest.

Fish Taste Quality

The Great Barracuda are targeted more for sports fishing than eating. However, they are popular in many types of dishes.

Taste Rating: 2/5

How to catch
Great Barracuda

Catch Difficulty: Intermediate

Tackle: Ganged Hook Rig, Artificial Rig

Bait: Anchovy, Herring, Lures, Bait jig, Pilchards, Squid, Soft plastics

Technique: Slowly sink bait towards bottom, Trolling, Cast lures with a fast retrieve, Cast lures close to structure

Popularity: Highly Targeted

Recreational Viewing
- Snorkeling & Scuba

Finding: Easy

Temperament: Curious

Location: Outer reef, Seagrass bed

Danger: Reports of attacks are rare & due to mistaken identity

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