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Myrophis punctatus  Lütken, 1852

Speckled worm-eel
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Image of Myrophis punctatus (Speckled worm-eel)
Myrophis punctatus
Picture by Giarrizzo, T.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes (gen., sp.) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Anguilliformes (Eels and morays) > Ophichthidae (Snake eels) > Myrophinae
Etymology: Myrophis: Greek, myros, -ou = male of morey eel + Greek, ophis = serpent (Ref. 45335).   More on author: Lütken.

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Marine; brackish; reef-associated; depth range 0 - 100 m (Ref. 5951).   Tropical

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Western Atlantic: Bermuda and North Carolina (USA) to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico, the West Indies, and the coast of Central America. Also throughout Caribbean (Ref. 26938). Northwest Atlantic: Canada. Records from the eastern Atlantic need confirmation.

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: Lm ?  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 35.3 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 30499)

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Pale brown, with a fine peppering of black spots on the back and sides of the body; ventral surface is light (Ref. 30499).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Inhabits seagrass beds from bays and mangroves to offshore reefs. Adults move to open sea to spawn. The species has considerable regenerative powers (Ref. 5521). Tidal creeks and brackish estuaries offshore to depths of 7 m (Ref. 26938). Reported from fresh water in Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Mexico (Ref. 30499). Caught for bait fishery with use of ichthyotoxic plants (e.g. 'cunabi') along the north Brazilian coast (Ref. 34896).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : McCosker, John | Collaborators

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. 115185)

CITES (Ref. 115941)

Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361)

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans

  Harmless




Human uses

Fisheries: commercial; bait: usually
FAO(Publication : search) | FishSource |

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Estimates of some properties based on models

Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969): 12.5 - 27.8, mean 24.4 (based on 774 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805):  PD50 = 0.5078   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00076 (0.00029 - 0.00200), b=3.06 (2.83 - 3.29), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this (Sub)family-body shape (Ref. 93245).
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278):  4.1   ±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 vulnerability (24 of 100) .
Price category (Ref. 80766):   Unknown.