Main identification features
snout very long, slender; stripe through head
dorsal fin long base, 37-54
tail fin small, black
operculum: several ridges
a: tiny, 4
Head long (15-22% of standard length), without spines; snout very long (50-67% of head length), slender (~11% of snout length), straight; mouth strongly oblique, rising above tip of snout; well developed horizontal ridge across center of operculum, with several oblique ridges below it; dorsal fin long, 37-54 rays; pectoral broad base, short fin, central rays shorter than outer rays, 17-23 rays; tail fin small, rounded, 9 rays; anal fin tiny, 4 rays; brood pouch under trunk of body; body with 17-21 rings, tail with 20-26 rings; oval plates between body rings without longitudinal keels; ridges along upper side of body and of tail not joined; ridge on side of body joins ridge on lower side of tail; ridges spiny in juveniles, +/- small spines in adults; tail fin small.
Brownish grey; dark stripe along snout, through eye, across operculum and along upper back to dorsal fin; dorsal fin with brown vertical streaks between rays; tail fin blackish.
Size: 95 cm.
Habitat: estuaries and freshwater.
Depth: shallow 0-10 m.
A west Atlantic species that has passed through the Panama Canal to Panama Bay and spread westward to Costa Rica.