Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Ophidiiformes
(Cusk eels) > Ophidiidae
(Cusk-eels) > Ophidiinae
Etymology: Lepophidium: Latin, lepus, leporis = rabbit + Greek, ophis = serpent (Ref. 45335).
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; demersal; depth range 6 - 250 m (Ref. 55763). Tropical; 32°N - 10°S, 116°W - 75°W (Ref. 91765)
Eastern Pacific: Gulf of California, Mexico to northern Peru (off Chiclayo) and along the outer coast of Baja California; offshore at Isla del Coco, Costa Rica, in the Islas Perlas, Panama, and Galapagos (record needs confirmation).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 24.8 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 91765)
Morphology | Morphometrics
soft rays: 109 - 121;
Vertebrae: 70 - 75. This species is characterized by the following: usual number of vertebrae, precaudal 15 (14), caudal 57-58 (56-60), total 72-73 (70-75); fin rays, dorsal 128-133 (125-137), anal 108-111 (106-116) pectoral 22-23 (21-24); pyloric caeca 3-5, usually 3 in one tier, 1 in second, sometimes 4+1 or 2+1+1 (3 tiers); first gill arch with rudimentary rakers 3 (rarely 2) on the upper arm, 1-3 rudimentary rakers (0-4) anteriorly on lower limb; total rakers usually 9 (8-12); dorsal-fin origin between neural spines 3-4 (27 specimens) or 4-5 (9 specimens) (Ref. 91765).
Uncommon species (Ref. 34024) inhabiting sandy and muddy bottoms (Ref. 9329). Reproductive strategy possibly similar to other members of this family featuring oviparity, with oval pelagic eggs floating in a gelatinous mass (Ref. 205). Biology little known (Ref. 9329).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Robins, C.R., R.H. Robins and M.E. Brown, 2012. A revision of Lepophidium (Teleoastei, Ophidiidae), with descriptions of eight new species. Bulletin of the Florida Museum of Natural History 52(1):1-94. (Ref. 91765)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 119314)
CITES (Ref. 115941)
Threat to humans
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 14.8 - 26.3, mean 21.4 (based on 137 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00245 (0.00138 - 0.00435), b=3.20 (3.04 - 3.36), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.6 ±0.7 se; Based on size and trophs of closest relatives
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low to moderate vulnerability (31 of 100) .