Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Anguilliformes
(Eels and morays) > Muraenidae
(Moray eels) > Muraeninae
Etymology: Gymnothorax: Greek, gymnos = naked + Greek, thorax, -akos = breast (Ref. 45335).
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; freshwater; brackish; reef-associated; depth range 1 - 51 m (Ref. 58302). Tropical; 38°N - 36°S, 18°E - 129°W
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 120 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 1602); common length : 80.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 30573)
Indo-Pacific: East Africa (Ref. 33390) to Marquesas and Mangaréva, north to the Ryukyu and Hawaiian islands, south to Lord Howe Island. Southeast Atlantic: South Africa.
Occurs in coral-rich areas of lagoon and seaward reefs from depths of 1 m to at least 36 m. Prefers very shallow depth and juveniles often in intertidal zones (Ref. 30404). Benthic (Ref. 58302). Often seen hunting during low tide among partly exposed reefs (Ref. 48635). Feeds mainly on fishes, also on crustaceans, by day and probably also at night (Ref. 13550). Caught with various nets (Ref. 30573).
Chen, H.-M., K.-T. Shao and C.T. Chen, 1994. A review of the muraenid eels (Family Muraenidae) from Taiwan with descriptions of twelve new records. Zool. Stud. 33(1):44-64.
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)
Threat to humans
Reports of ciguatera poisoning (Ref. 4690)
Fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on empirical models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 4.5 ±0.8 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (52 of 100) .