Sphyraena forsteri   Cuvier,  1829 (Fish)
Organism information awaits expert curation
Class: Actinopterygii

Image copyrights: Mya Than Tun

Size: Maximum 64 cm; common between 20-30 cm.

Color: Blue/black above, sides silvery, without dark bars or chevrons; a dark blotch in axil of pectoral fin. Inside of mouth dark grey. Tips of second dorsal and anal fins white.

Body elongate and sub cylindrical with small cycloid scales, head long and pointed. Mouth large and horizontal, the tip of the lower jaw protruding, intermaxilla non-protractile. Preoperculum broadly rounded. Lower limb of the first fill arch with spiny tubercles. First dorsal fin origin opposite or before the pectoral tip, the first spine shorter than the second. Dorsal spines (total): 6 - 6, Dorsal soft rays (total): 9 - 9, Anal spines: 2, Anal soft rays: 9. Height 6.4-7, 7.6-8.3 in length with caudal. Head 3, 3.6 in length with caudal. Eye 4.5-4.7, twice in snout, somewhat more than interorbital space, 1.3-1.4 in postorbital part of head. Maxillary reaching about to vertical through front border of eye, 2.3-2.4 in head. Angle of praeoperculum rounded. Operculum with a flexible spine. A series of small teeth, with two canines in front, in the upper jaw. On the palatines 4-7 canines, followed by smaller ones. Teeth in the lower jaw directed slightly backwards, in a single series, distant, increasing in size posteriorly. Rasp-like teeth on tongue. Origin of first dorsal above tip of pectorals and somewhat behind origin of ventrals. Second spine of first dorsal longest, shorter or much shorter than post-orbital part of head. Base of second dorsal 2.2-2.6 in distance between two dorsals. Origin of anal below fourth ray of second dorsal. Pectorals somewhat longer than postorbital part of head. Ventrals shorter than pectorals. Caudal forked.

Remarks: Values in above description denote proportions.

Synonym (s)
Sphyraena forsteri Cuvier and Valenciennes, 1829
Sphyraena forsteri Bleeker, 1857
Sphyraena forsteri Gunther, 1860
Sphyraena forsteri Steindachner, 1879
Sphyraena forsteri Jordan and Evermann, 1902
Sphyraena forsteri Kendall and Goldsborough, 1911
Callosphyraena toxeuma Smith, 1956
Callosphyraena toxeuma (Fowler, 1904)
(Junior synonym)
Sphyraena forsteri Cuvier, 1829
(Senior synonym)
Sphyraena toxeuma Fowler, 1904
(Junior synonym)
Sphyraena forsteni Cuvier, 1829

Common Name (s)
• Bigeye Barracuda (English)
• Forster's barracuda (English)
• Fandiyarutholi (Mahl)
• Kolas (Malayalam)
• Ooli
Economic Importance and Threats
Importance:  Commercial, Dangers
(Fisheries; sold fresh, frozen or dried salted.
Reported to cause ciguatera poisoning.)

Habitat:  Benthic, Pelagic, Reef Associated, Demersal
Trophic Level:  Tertiary Consumer
Prey:  Fishes, penaeid shrimps and squids


• West Bengal, Kolkata INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Chennai Coast INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Agatti INDIA
• Lakshadweep, Minicoy INDIA
• Lakshadweep INDIA
• Tamil Nadu, Gulf of Mannar INDIA
• Andaman and Nicobar Islands INDIA
• Andhra Pradesh, Off Visakhapatnam (Lat: 17.73) (Long: 83.55) INDIA (Record: 04/1989-03/1990) (Depth: 50 mts)

Literature Source(s)
  • Wafar, MVM (2003) Checklists of reef fauna Available at - http://www.reefindia.org/
  • Rao, DV; Devi, K and Rajan, PT (2000) An account of ichthyofauna of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Bay of Bengal Occasional paper no 178 Records of the Zoological Survey of India ZSI, Calcutta 1-434 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Hussain, SM Brief report on biodiversity in the coastal areas of Pakistan p 113
  • Froese, R and Pauly, D (2000) Fishbase 2000: Concepts, design and data sources ICLARM 344 pp Available at - http://www.fishbase.org
  • Matthews, AD (1983) Mercury content of commercially important fish of the Seychelles, and hair mercury levels of a selected part of the population Environmental Research 30(2) 305-312 Available at - Zoological Records
  • Allen, GR and Mohammed, A (2003) Coral Reef Fishes of Indonesia Zoological Studies 42(1) 26299 Available at - Digital Information Resource Center, Pune.
  • Laroche, J; Baran, E and Rasoanandrasana, NB (1997) Temporal patterns in a fish assemblage of a semiarid mangrove zone in Madagascar Journal of Fish Biology 51 Available at - NCL, Pune
  • Tun, MT (2001) Marine fishes of Myanmar (pelagic and demersal) U Than Tun, Director-General, Department of Fisheries, Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries, Myanmar 276 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Society for the Management of European Biodiversity Data (2009) World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) Available at - http://www.marinespecies.org
  • Weber, M; Beaufort, LF (1922) The fishes of the Indo-Australian Archipelago Print times, Pataudi house, Daryaganj, New Delhi 4 410 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Marine Biological Station, Chennai, Tamil Nadu (2003) Checklist of marine fauna of Tamil Nadu Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Available at - http://tnenvis.nic.in
  • Dr. Ramesh, R; Dr. Nammalwar, P and Dr. Gowri, VS (2008) Database on coastal information of Tamil Nadu Report Submitted to Environmental Information System (ENVIS) Centre, Department of Environment, Government of Tamil Nadu Institute for Ocean Management, Anna University, Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Available at - http://tnenvis.nic.in/PDF/coastal%20data.pdf
  • Jones, S and Kumaran, M (1980) Fishes of the Laccadive Archipelago The Nature Conservation and Aquatic Sciences Service, Trivandrum, Kerala 760 pp Available at - NIO, Goa
  • Fischer, W and Bianchi, G (Eds.) (1984) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51) FAO, Rome 4 Available at - http://www.fao.org/docrep/009/ad468e/ad468e00.HTM#Contents
  • Fischer, W and Whitehead, PJP (1974) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Eastern Indian Ocean - Fishing Area 57 and Western Central Pacific - Fishing Area 71 FAO, Rome 4 Available at - http://www.fao.org/docrep/009/e9163e/e9163e00.htm
  • Dr. Kumaraguru, AK (2000) Studies on socioeconomics of Coral Reef resource users in the Gulf of Mannar coast, South India Centre for Marine and Coastal studies School of Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai, India Available at - http://planningcommission.nic.in/reports/sereport/ser/stdy_coral.pdf
  • Jones, S. (1969) Catalogue of fishes from the Laccadive Archipelago in the reference collections of the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute. Bulletin of Central Marine Research Institute CMFRI, Cochin 8 1-35 Available at - http://eprints.cmfri.org.in/569/1/Bulletin_8.pdf
  • Talwar, PK (1990) Fishes of Andaman and Nicobar Islands: A synoptic survey Journal of the Andaman Science Association Andaman Science Association, Port Blair 6(2) 71-102 Available at - NIO,Goa
  • Pillai, PKM and Augustine, SK (2000) A code list of common marine living resources of the Indian seas CMFRI Special Publication No.12 CMFRI 1-115 Available at - eprints.cmfri.org.in/3975/1/Special_Publication_No_12_Revised.pdf
  • Sujatha, K (1995) Finfish constituents of trawl by-catch off Visakhapatnam Fishery Technology Society of Fisheries Technologists 32(1) 56-60 Available at - NIO, Goa

Page last updated on:2012-01-03

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