With incomplete skin and a twisted jaw, Barraskewda have at times been cited as an inspiration for the strange reconstruction of Galarian fossil pokemon, and their facial morphology suggests a distant descent from a species related to Arctovish and Dracovish. Yet Barraskewda, if perhaps comical in appearance and difficult to care for (they can live for far longer in captivity than in the wild, but their side bones must be regularly cleaned in a process analogous to dental care) are by no means misshapen; the fastest living thing underwater, they are better known for the unrelenting fury with which they chase after their prey.

Barraskewda have been nicknamed "The Royal Navy" and even "the Shield of Galar" (a title which properly belongs to Zamazenta) for the dangers they have posed to would-be invaders throughout history. Barraskewda are not actually interested in human boats, but the spikes on their back can easily puncture a ship's hull or even tear it in two at the speed in which they move, and they do not consider them obstacles to be moved around, either.

Galarian sailors know by heart where on the coast these pokemon live, and, if forced to sail there, closely track the angles of both Barraskewda and prey pokemon to carefully maneuver away. In war, however, they do not hesitate to use them as a weapon; a Magikarp or Goldeen hurled by a Machamp from the mast creates a splash area Barraskewda will not hesitate to notice. Foreigners are not always so well-informed, and often fail to even acknowledge these defensively frail pokemon as a threat, and not only to hostile armadas: even this year, multiple merchant ships sailing with no local crewmen were wrecked on Galar's shores, losing their cargoes on the verge of their destination.