Pristis Microdon

Pristidae

Rhinopristiformes

Coral Reefs, Sand, Inshore, Nearshore

1100 - 1300 pounds

20" - 23"

Largetooth Sawfish

Also Known As:

Largetooth Sawfish (Pristis Microdon) Fish Description

The largetooth sawfish is a ray that has a chainsaw-like rostrum that has anywhere from 14-24 separated teeth on each side. This elongated snout is swung from one side to the other to stun their prey. They are known to commonly reach lengths over 20 feet long and are easily differentiated by the broader spacing of their 'teeth' compared to similar sawfish species. 

The top of the largetooth sawfish is generally grey to yellowish-brown but may have a reddish color in freshwater. The underbelly is greyish-white and the dorsal may have a pale yellow hue with a reddish tip.

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Interesting Facts about the Largetooth Sawfish

  • Largetooth sawfish are known to be able to swim backward and have an uncanny talent to “climb” using their pectoral fins as arms when in captivity.
  • These fish can jump out of the water as high as 16 feet.
  • The teeth on their rostrum are technically hardened scales, and not their real teeth.

 

Largetooth Sawfish Size

The largetooth sawfish is recorded at reaching lengths of 20 feet long and may grow up to 23 feet. They commonly weigh between 1,100-1300 pounds.

 

Largetooth Sawfish Fishing Habitat & Distribution

The largetooth sawfish and its cousin, the smalltooth sawfish (P. pectinata), are the only two related species to have been identified as living in the western Atlantic Ocean. Both species once covered a variety of ecosystems - from the Caribbean to Central and South America, Africa, and freshwater habitats in the eastern Atlantic Ocean.

Now that this large fish is currently endangered due to overfishing, its actual modern-day distribution is quite uncertain. The largetooth sawfish are thought to have been rooted out from the waters of Florida where it once t