Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Anguilliformes
(Eels and morays) > Muraenidae
(Moray eels) > Muraeninae
Etymology: Gymnothorax: Greek, gymnos = naked + Greek, thorax, -akos = breast (Ref. 45335). More on author: Castelnau.
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; reef-associated; depth range ? - 145 m (Ref. 5288). Subtropical
Western Atlantic: Bermuda, southern Florida (USA), and the Bahamas to Brazil. Eastern Atlantic: Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, Cape Verde, and islands of Bay of Biafra (Ref. 4450).
Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 132 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 104752); common length : 70.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 5217); max. published weight: 750.00 g (Ref. 40637)
Morphology | Morphometrics
Mottled greenish or brown overall, often with darker flecks. Anal and caudal fins have white margins that continue onto rear third and sometimes entire length of dorsal fin (Ref. 26938).
A benthic and solitary species (Ref. 26340) inhabiting rocky shores and reefs where water is clear. Most active at night (Ref. 9710). Marketed fresh (Ref. 5217). May cause serious wounds (Ref. 5217). Traded as an aquarium fish at Ceará, Brazil (Ref. 49392).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Robins, C.R. and G.C. Ray, 1986. A field guide to Atlantic coast fishes of North America. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, U.S.A. 354 p. (Ref. 7251)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 123251)
CITES (Ref. 118484)
Threat to humans
Traumatogenic (Ref. 5217)
Fisheries: minor commercial; aquarium: commercial
Common namesSynonymsMetabolismPredatorsEcotoxicologyReproductionMaturitySpawningSpawning aggregationFecundityEggsEgg development
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 19.5 - 27.9, mean 25.4 °C (based on 660 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00059 (0.00038 - 0.00090), b=3.25 (3.13 - 3.37), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & Genus-body shape (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 4.3 ±0.6 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Very Low, minimum population doubling time more than 14 years (Preliminary K or Fecundity.).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): High to very high vulnerability (75 of 100) .