bar·​ra·​cu·​da | \ ˌber-ə-ˈkü-də How to pronounce barracuda (audio) , ˌba-rə- \
plural barracuda or barracudas

Definition of barracuda

1 : any of a genus (Sphyraena of the family Sphyraenidae) of elongate predaceous often large bony fishes of warm seas that includes food and sport fishes as well as some forms frequently causing ciguatera poisoning
2 : one that uses aggressive, selfish, and sometimes unethical methods to obtain a goal especially in business

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Synonyms & Antonyms for barracuda



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Examples of barracuda in a Sentence

The company's lawyers are a bunch of barracudas. the governor-elect is too nice and easygoing, so he'll need a barracuda as his chief of staff
Recent Examples on the Web Divers often get a chance to see sharks and schools of barracuda. John Christopher Fine,, "Boynton Beach diving: Underwater surprises await | Opinion," 31 Dec. 2020 Meanwhile, scuba-divers head to the Throne Room, where a large 50-foot wide cave unveils coral reef and an array of sting rays, snappers, barracuda, turtles, and eels. Kate Donnelly, Condé Nast Traveler, "An Insider's Guide to Negril, Jamaica's Low-Key Hideaway," 3 Feb. 2020 Instead of Alaskan king crab, Josh and his crew will be on the hunt for the lucrative ahi tuna as well as other underwater species like barracuda and swordfish. Erin Cavoto, Country Living, "There’s a 'Deadliest Catch' Spinoff Coming Soon and It Looks Insane," 28 Mar. 2020 On some atolls there, live coral covers 70% of the reef’s surface; on others, big fish such as grouper and barracuda that have almost disappeared elsewhere are thriving. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "As coral reefs suffer around the world, reefs in French Polynesia are thriving," 16 Dec. 2019 Uncrowded above the waves, down under is busy with a kaleidoscope of barracuda, parrotfish and squid that hang out towards the inlet. Melanie Refffes, USA TODAY, "Shh! These are the best secret beaches in the Caribbean," 25 Nov. 2019 Or lean over the rail and count needlefish, barracuda, and the odd tarpon., "“I’m not doing this again. Find another cook.” So the search began for an alternative family vacation. Dude ranches. Cruises. Safaris. We couldn’t reach a consensus.," 17 Oct. 2019 A half-shark, half-octopus battles a half-pterodactyl, half-barracuda. Los Angeles Times, "Here are the feature and TV films airing the week of Sunday, Aug. 11, 2019," 11 Aug. 2019 Suddenly, from beneath the surface, a pink-skinned, orange-haired monster appears, succeeded soon afterward by another creature, with striped arms, an orchid on its head, and a barracuda dangling from its fishlike mouth. Arthur Lubow, New York Times, "In Chicago, Overlooked Achievements by L.G.B.T.Q. Artists," 2 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'barracuda.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of barracuda

1678, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for barracuda

American Spanish

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Time Traveler for barracuda

Time Traveler

The first known use of barracuda was in 1678

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Statistics for barracuda

Last Updated

12 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Barracuda.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of barracuda

: a kind of fierce tropical fish that has strong jaws and sharp teeth
US, informal + disapproving : someone who uses aggressive, harsh, and sometimes improper ways to achieve something


bar·​ra·​cu·​da | \ ˌber-ə-ˈkü-də \

Kids Definition of barracuda

: any of several large fierce marine fishes of warm seas that have strong jaws and sharp teeth

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