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Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Beloniformes
Family: Hemiramphidae
Genus: Hemiramphus
Species: H. brasiliensis
Binomial name
Hemiramphus brasiliensis
(Linnaeus, 1758)

The ballyhoo or bally, Hemiramphus brasiliensis, is a baitfish of the halfbeak family (Hemiramphidae). It is similar to the Balao halfbeak (Hemiramphus balao). Ballyhoo are frequently used as cut bait and for trolling purposes by saltwater sportsmen.

Ballyhoo can also be seen above the waters skimming the surface to escape from their predators. The appearance is similar to skipping stones on the water.[citation needed]


The name ballyhoo comes from the native Brazilian Tupí–Guaraní term "b'ayi hyo" meaning "penis fish". [1]


  1. ^ Caralho, Jao de(1993) Peixes de Ámérica do Sul, p.112, Universidade de Rio de Janeiro