Echidna nebulosa (Ahl, 1789)
Starry moray
Echidna nebulosa
photo by Randall, J.E.

Family:  Muraenidae (Moray eels), subfamily: Muraeninae
Max. size:  100 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  reef-associated; depth range 1 - 48 m
Distribution:  Indo-Pacific: Red Sea and East Africa (Ref. 33390) and Persian Gulf (Ref. 68964) to the Society Islands, north to southern Japan and the Hawaiian Islands, south to Lord Howe Island; throughout Micronesia. Eastern Central Pacific: southern Baja California, Mexico and from Costa Rica to northern Colombia (Ref. 9324). Also found in Southeast Atlantic.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 0-0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 0-0; Anal spines: 0-0; Anal soft rays: 0-0; Vertebrae: 119-126. Body white with 2 rows of large dendritic black blotches; black spots between blotches become irregularly linear with age. Yellow eyes (Ref. 48635). Description: Characterized by body depth at gill opening 14-23 in TL; origin of dorsal fin above or slightly anterior to gill opening; anus near middle of body; without canine teeth; conical to rounded molariform jaw teeth; vomer with rounded molariform teeth in two rows that diverge anteriorly in large individuals (Ref. 90102).
Biology:  Found between rocks and corals of intertidal reef flats, also in shallow lagoon and seaward reefs to depths of at least 10 m (Ref. 9710, 58302). Benthic (Ref. 58302). Nocturnal (Ref. 68964). Feed mainly on crustaceans. Protogynous hermaphroditism unconfirmed for this species (Ref. 84746). Safely kept with small aquarium fishes (Ref. 9710). Solitary, seen usually in the open or with only head exposed (Ref 90102).
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 16 August 2011 Ref. (120744)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   

Entered by: Capuli, Estelita Emily - 15.04.92
Modified by: Valdestamon, Roxanne Rei - 21.02.18
Checked by: Garilao, Cristina V. - 04.07.95

Source and more info: For personal, classroom, and other internal use only. Not for publication.

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