Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Beloniformes
(Needle fishes) > Scomberesocidae
Etymology: Scomberesox: Latin, scomber = mackerel + Esox, the old name for "pike" (Ref. 45335).
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; pelagic-oceanic; oceanodromous (Ref. 51243); depth range 0 - 30 m (Ref. 6531). Subtropical; 66°N - 22°S, 98°W - 36°E
Arctic (Ref. 43202). North Atlantic. Eastern Atlantic: Iceland, Norway and Denmark (rarely), along British Isles into Baltic Sea and throughout the Mediterranean, Adriatic and Aegean seas to Morocco. Western Atlantic: Gulf of St. Lawrence, Canada to North Carolina, USA and Bermuda (Ref. 7251). Highly migratory species, Annex I of the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea (Ref. 26139).
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 26.5, range 25 - ? cm
Max length : 50.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 7251); common length : 32.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 3397)
Oceanic, schooling and gregarious. Occasionally shoals close to shore in large numbers (Ref. 9987). Feeds on zooplankton and fish larvae (Ref. 9987); food also includes fish eggs and small fishes (Ref. 5951). Preyed upon by fish, including tunas, marlin bluefish and cod (Ref. 9987); also pollock, dolphins and porpoises (Ref. 5951). It is an under-exploited fish in many parts of its range and suitable for canning and other inexpensive uses (Ref. 9987). Often leap of the water when chased by enemies (Ref. 35388).
Distinct pairing (Ref. 205). Presence of asynchronous oocyte development in the ovaries (Ref. 109439).
Wisner, R.L., 1990. Scomberesocidae. p. 598-603. In J.C. Quero, J.C. Hureau, C. Karrer, A. Post and L. Saldanha (eds.) Check-list of the fishes of the eastern tropical Atlantic (CLOFETA). JNICT, Lisbon; SEI, Paris; and UNESCO, Paris. Vol. 2. (Ref. 6531)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 119314)
CITES (Ref. 115941)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial; bait: occasionally
Estimates of some properties based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 6.5 - 22, mean 14.4 (based on 7800 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.6562 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00219 (0.00105 - 0.00457), b=3.11 (2.91 - 3.31), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.9 ±0.0 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Assusming tm=2-4).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (25 of 100) .