Sphyraena Argentea



Onshore, Nearshore, Offshore, Reef, Wreck

10 - 18 pounds

40" - 60"

Pacific Barracuda

Also Known As: California Barracuda  

Guides Who Fish This Species

Pacific Barracuda  (Sphyraena argentea ) Description

The Pacific Barracuda is a popular saltwater gamefish with an elongated, streamlined body. It’s silver in color and has a shiny backside. It has a pointy snout, and its lower jaw is slightly protruded. It has 2 widely separated dorsal fins and an anal fin with 2 spines. Its pectoral fins are short and its pelvic fin has 1 spine. Unlike other barracuda species, it doesn’t have spots.


Diet and Size

The Pacific barracuda is a medium to large fish. The biggest Pacific barracuda ever caught was 18 lbs and was 4 feet long (but some have been reported to be 5 feet long). On average they are 35 inches in length and weigh only 10 lbs. This fish matures quickly, just only with the span of 2 years. They are known as characteristically quick fish, but their speed has not been measured unlike their relative, the giant barracuda, with speeds up to 38 mph.

They are aggressive predators and eats a variety of fish such as anchovies, mackerel, and groupers. They also feed on invertebrates such as squids.


Interesting Facts About the Pacific Barracuda

  • This fish practice cannibalism, if given the opportunity, they would eat younger barracudas.
  • They are known to form schools to hunt other schools of fish. Herding the baitfish near the surface and then attacking them from different angles.
  • The Pacific barracuda are known to have excellent eyesight. They can follow their prey with the slightest of movements.
  • Pacific Barracudas only appear violent. When in reality, they're big cowards.
  • They're only mean towards small fishes.
  • Pacific Barracudas are only known to live up to 12 years.


How to Fish the Pacific Barracuda

As a game fish, the Pacific barracuda are known to be aggressive fighters that anglers love. You would sometimes see them thrashing out of the water when you catch them. Not a popular choice but there have been instances where anglers would catch Pacific barracuda via fly fishing. To catch one, make long casts and let your