Callechelys catostoma (Schneider, 1801)
Black-striped snake eel
photo by Randall, J.E.

Family:  Ophichthidae (Snake eels), subfamily: Ophichthinae
Max. size:  85 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  reef-associated; depth range 1 - 32 m
Distribution:  Indo-Pacific: Red Sea and East Africa to the Society Islands, north to the Ryukyu Islands, south to Lord Howe Island.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 0-0; Dorsal soft rays (total): 0-0; Anal spines: 0-0; Anal soft rays: 0-0; Vertebrae: 195-205. Adults have a broad lateral black band along the middle of each side. Description: Characterized by whitish to cream color; black margin of dorsal fin; head length 10-20 in TL; body depth 48-73 in TL; short tail, 3.2-3.6 in TL; eye above tip of lower jaw; dorsal fin origin above or slightly posterior to corner of mouth; no pectoral fin; intermaxillary with 2-4 backward slanting canines in ventral groove under snout; remaining teeth of jaws and vomer small and uniserial (Ref. 90102).
Biology:  Found in shallow areas buried in loose gravel and sand (Ref. 1602, 75154). Benthic (Ref. 58302, 75154). It buries itself with the aid of its pointed snout or its bony, sharp tail.
IUCN Red List Status: Not Evaluated (N.E.) Ref. (123251)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   

Entered by: Capuli, Estelita Emily - 17.03.95
Modified by: Bailly, Nicolas - 07.05.10
Checked by: Torres, Armi G. - 23.08.99

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 Not for publication.

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