Snowflake Moray Eel

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Echidna nebulosa - (Ahl, 1789)
Snowflake Moray Eel

A hardy, well-mannered eel ideal for beginning marine aquarists. Scott W. Michael

[edit] Overview

This is a pleasingly marked, extremely hardy and long-lived fish that readily acclimates to aquarium life and is the ideal choice for a first marine eel. It does not share the large size or aggressive fish-eating traits of the more notorious members of its family.

Family: Muraenidae

Other common name(s):

Native range:

Habitat: Reef. Provide lots of caves and crevices. Without such structures, it is likely to swim about the tank continually and stop feeding, and may leap from the tank if it can find an exit.

Maximum length: 100 cm (39 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 114 L (30 gal)

Water: Marine 24 °C (297 K, 75 °F) - 28 °C (301 K, 82 °F)

General swimming level: Bottom.

[edit] Feeding

Carnivore. Feed fresh or frozen seafood, such as shrimp or pieces of non-oily fish (live food may be required for some ­individuals). Feed to satiation several times a week.

[edit] Aquarium Compatibility

This moray feeds primarily on crabs and shrimp in the wild, and is not as big a threat to fish tankmates as some of its relatives. However, it may consume smaller fishes and is especially prone to feeding on crustaceans. Larger morays have been known to eat this eel.

[edit] Breeding/Propagation

Egg scatterers that produce pelagic eggs, often in midwater mating rituals. Both eggs and larvae that drift with plankton in the water column and settle back onto a reef at about the time of metamorphosis. These are among the most challenging types of marine fishes to propagate in captivity.

[edit] Notes

The Snowflake Moray will spend much of its time with its head protruding from a crevice. When food enters the water, it leaves its refuge and swims about searching for the source of the attractive odors. In this excited state, it may occasionally nip at fish tankmates. The aquarist can curtail this behavior, to some degree, by delivering its meal on a feeding stick. The aquarium must be carefully covered, as all eels are prone to slithering up and out of their tanks.

Reference: 101 Best Saltwater Fishes
Image credit: SWM
Text credit: SWM
Facts about Snowflake Moray EelRDF feed
Common name Snowflake Moray Eel  +
Family Muraenidae  +
Genus Echidna  +
Image credit SWM  +
Maximum length 39 in  +
Minimum aquarium size 30 gal  +
Native range Indo-Pacific  +, Eastern Pacific  +, Baja  +, California  +, Red Sea  +, East Africa  +, Society Islands  +, Japan  +, Hawaii  +, Lord Howe Island  +, and Micronesia  +
Reference 101 Best Saltwater Fishes  +
Specific name nebulosa  +
Swimming level Bottom.  +
Text credit SWM  +
Water max temp 301 K (28 °C, 82 °F)  +
Water min temp 297 K (24 °C, 75 °F)  +
Water type Marine  +