Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Echeneidae
Etymology: Echeneis: Greek, echein = to hold + Greek, nays = ship; remora, suckling fish; 1774 (Ref. 45335). More on author: Linnaeus.
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; brackish; reef-associated; depth range 20 - 50 m (Ref. 28016). Subtropical; 45°N - 45°S, 180°W - 180°E
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 110 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9710); common length : 66.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 10970); max. published weight: 2.3 kg (Ref. 40637)
soft rays: 29 - 41. With a dark mid-lateral stripe bordered by narrow white stripes above and below (Ref. 26938). Body depth contained in 8-14 times in SL; caudal fin in adults almost truncate with the upper and lower lobes longer than the middle rays; first dorsal fin replaced by a transversal, laminated, oval cephalic disc with 18-28 laminae (Ref. 10970); 21-28 laminae (according to K.R. Sreenath (pers. comm, 11/2010; firstname.lastname@example.org) .
Circumtropical. Western Atlantic: Nova Scotia, Canada and Bermuda to Uruguay (Ref. 7251, 26938). Eastern Central Atlantic: Madeira Island (Ref. 74541).
Most abundant remora in warm waters (Ref. 4389). Occurs near as well as far from the coast (Ref. 5217). Often found free-swimming in shallow inshore areas and around coral reefs (Ref. 26938). Attaches temporarily to a variety of hosts including sharks, rays, large bony fishes or sea turtles, whales, dolphins and also to ships. May follow divers (Ref. 9710); reported to attach itself to a diver's leg (Ref. 57809). Feeds on small fishes, bits of its host's prey and host's parasites (Ref. 26938). Juveniles occasionally act as reef station-based cleaners, where they service parrotfishes (Ref. 40095). Sometimes used by natives to aid in fishing; a line is tied to the caudal peduncle of the remora and then is released; upon attaching to another fish, the remora and its host are hauled in by the fisher (Ref. 9682).
Paxton, J.R., D.F. Hoese, G.R. Allen and J.E. Hanley, 1989. Pisces. Petromyzontidae to Carangidae. Zoological Catalogue of Australia, Vol. 7. Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra, 665 p.
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial; gamefish: yes; aquarium: commercial
Estimates of some properties based on empirical models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.7539 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00273 (-0.19728 - 0.20275), b=3.15 (3.04 - 3.26), based on LWR estimates for this family-BS (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.4 ±0.5 se; Based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Assuming Fec < 10,000).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (54 of 100) .