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Sport Fishing
for the
Saltwater Fish Species of The Gambia

48lb Guinean Barracuda - Sphyraena afra

Barracuda Types:
Guinean Barracuda
Scientific Names:
Sphyraena afra
General Catch Size:
5lb to 100lb
African Angler Record :

Gladiators of the Barracuda world !

This fish occurs in tropical waters of the eastern Atlantic from Mauritania to Namibia.  It is found along the continental shelf and commonly enters lagoons and river estuaries.

Distinct Markings: The sides of the Guinean Barracuda are marked with approximately 20 dark, largely open chevrons that angle forward and remain distinctive in the larger species. 

There are no white tips on the fins or black blotches on the body.  The bony edge of the opercle ends in 2 points, the dorsal fin origin is distinctly behind the level of the pelvic fin origins.  Strong pointed teeth are contiguous, flattened, those of the lower jaw erect and never slanting backward.

Size: The Guinean Barracuda reportedly grows to 6.7ft and attains a weight of 110.2lb/50kg - (the All-Tackle world record stands at 101lb 3oz in Gabon).  This species is considered to be a good food fish and has never been reported to be ciguatoxic.


Best Baits:
Mann's Magnum 30, 30+, 40, 50 Stretch series Fishing Lures

Top Tips: These giant Guinean Barracuda are exclusive to the West Coast of Africa.  Here in The Gambia they are predominantly fished using diving fishing lures trolled through the deep channels in the mouth of the River Gambia.

Deep-water lures running in 30ft to 50ft of water consistently produce strikes from these feisty predators.  Deep-diving lures trolled at 4 to 6 knots apply an immense amount of pressure on your fishing tackle so considerations must be observed outside of using a conventional barracuda fishing outfit.

For lures which are designed for depths of up to 30ft a 30lb class rod with 50lb to 60lb braided line loaded onto a quality multiplyer reel with a smooth drag and fast retrieve ratio, is necessary.  Braided line works the lures harder than conventional mono-line because it has no stretch or elasticity, a low diameter with high breaking strain.

For larger lures running in 40ft to 50ft of water I would suggest a 50lb class rod with 100lb braided line also loaded onto a quality multiplier. 

Large fish often twist and roll during a fight and can rap the main line around themselves therefore use up-to 2mtrs of 100lb wire trace from your lure to your main line.

When: All year-round (the larger fish - 40lb-80lb - of this species are caught Oct/Nov/Dec)

Recommended TACKLE for catching Barracuda

Rod: 30lb - 50lb Boat Rod
Reel: Quality multiplier or big fixed spool
Main Line: 50lb-100lb braided line
Swivel: 100lb
Hooks: triple strength 5/0 trebles
Lures: 30ft to 50ft diving lures (Mann's)

 75lb Guinean Barracuda

 75lb Guinean Barracuda
    'African Angler' Best

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  Fish Species
  of The Gambia

  Guinea Barracuda

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Did you know.
there are at least 26 known species of Barracuda.......

1.   Sharpfin barracuda, Sphyraena acutipinnis
2.   Guinean barracuda, Sphyraena afra
3.   Pacific barracuda, Sphyraena argentea
4.   Great barracuda, Sphyraena barracuda
5.   Northern sennet, Sphyraena borealis
6.   Yellowstripe barracuda, Sphyraena chrysotaenia
7.   Mexican barracuda, Sphyraena ensis
8.   Yellowtail barracuda, Sphyraena flavicauda
9.   Bigeye barracuda, Sphyraena forsteri
10. Guachanche barracuda, Sphyraena guachancho
11. Heller's barracuda, Sphyraena helleri
12. Sphyraena iburiensis
13. Pelican barracuda, Sphyraena idiastes
14. Japanese barracuda, Sphyraena japonica
15. Pickhandle barracuda, Sphyraena jello
16. Lucas barracuda, Sphyraena lucasana
17. Australian barracuda, Sphyraena novaehollandiae
18. Obtuse barracuda, Sphyraena obtusata
19. Southern sennet, Sphyraena picudilla
20. Red barracuda, Sphyraena pinguis
21. Sawtooth barracuda, Sphyraena putnamae
22. Blackfin barracuda, Sphyraena qenie
23. European barracuda, Sphyraena sphyraena
24. Sphyraena tome
25. Yellowmouth barracuda, Sphyraena viridensis
26. Sphyraena waitii



54lb Guinean Barracuda












        54lb Guinean Barracuda

Visit our Youtube. VIDEO LOUNGE and watch 'fishing moments' from The Gambia - See UK Angler William Hart & his 70lb Guinean Barracuda


 Gambia Fishing Trips - Guinean Barracuda Fishing Holidays                     Copyright (c) www.african-angling 2010-2015