Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Beloniformes
(Needle fishes) > Hemiramphidae
Etymology: Hemiramphus: Greek, hemi = half + Greek, rhamphos = bill, peak (Ref. 45335).
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range 0 - 5 m (Ref. 3723), usually 0 - 2 m (Ref. 40849). Subtropical; 43°N - 13°S
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 19.3  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 55.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 2683); common length : 35.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 3633); max. published weight: 200.00 g (Ref. 5217)
Western Atlantic: Massachusetts, USA and northern Gulf of Mexico to Brazil, including the Caribbean Sea (Ref. 3723); absent in Bermuda. Eastern Atlantic: Cape Verde and Dakar, Senegal to Luanda, Angola (Ref. 4497).
An inshore, surface-dwelling species forming sizeable schools (Ref. 3723). Feeds mainly on sea grasses and small fishes (Ref. 3723). Mainly used as bait for offshore game fishes such as sailfishes and marlins; utilized as a food fish in the West Indies (Ref. 3723).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Robins, C.R. and G.C. Ray, 1986. A field guide to Atlantic coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 354 p. (Ref. 7251)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 96402)
CITES (Ref. 94142)
Threat to humans
Reports of ciguatera poisoning (Ref. 30911)
Fisheries: minor commercial; bait: usually
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5005 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00234 (0.00171 - 0.00321), b=3.19 (3.10 - 3.28), based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 2.3 ±0.1 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=0.58 questionable; assuming tmax>3).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (27 of 100) .