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Surname: Moray eel
Latin name: Muraenidae
size: 20 - 400cm (depending on the species)
mass: up to 30kg
Older: 10 - 30 years
Appearance: numerous color variants possible
Sexual dimorphism: No
Nutrition type: Carnivore
food: Fish, snails, crabs
original origin: unknown
Sleep-wake rhythm: twilight and nocturnal
habitat: Coral reef
natural enemies: Shark, barracuda
sexual maturity: about the age of five
mating season: ?
oviposition: up to 250,000 eggs
social behavior: Loners
Threatened with extinction: No
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting about the moray eel
- Moray eels belong to the family of bony fish and through their body form to the order of the eels.
- Worldwide there are about two hundred species of moray eels inhabiting both tropical and subtropical oceans as well as parts of the northern Atlantic and Mediterranean.
- Moray eels prefer to live in shallow waters and coral reefs, where they hide as highly habitable fish in crevices and caves.
- A moray eel rarely leaves its shelter completely when it goes looking for food during the night. The smaller species spend their entire lives in their hiding place and fast only to catch prey from their cave.
- Depending on the species, moray eels can reach between twenty centimeters and four meters in length and reach a body weight of up to thirty kilograms.
- Morays have neither chest nor pelvic fins, but swim through fast meandering movements.
- Her body is elongated, very muscular and flattened on the sides. Depending on the species, the scale-free skin, which is protected from injury by a lubricant, is dyed brown, gray, purple or black. However, some tropical species have a striking pattern in bright and vibrant colors.
- As predatory fish, morays, depending on the species, mainly feed on smaller fish, snails, clams or crustaceans. Also, carrion serves as an important food source for many species. With their slender mouth and a sophisticated technique of snaking, morays from dead animals can bite out large pieces, even if they are in crevices.
- Moray eels look very bad, but have an excellent sense of smell that allows them to track down their prey and take it in a targeted manner.
- In addition to sharks and barracudas, moray eels have few natural predators.
- Some larger species are considered coveted edible fish in some countries, with poisoning by the toxic meat being commonplace.
- To allow oxygen to enter the gills, moray eels open and close their mouths to pump water at regular intervals. This is confused by many people with aggressive snatching, which helps keep moray eels highly dangerous.
- Contrary to their reputation, moray eels usually bite only to defend themselves or to catch prey. They have no fangs, but as scavengers can transmit germs through a bite, which are sometimes dangerous to humans and slow down wound healing considerably.
- However, the blood of some moray eels has a high concentration of toxins.
- Moray eels live in symbiosis with cleaner fish or shrimps, because they let them clean their teeth. The small fish and shrimp feed on the leftovers that stick between the pointed teeth of the moray eels.
- Depending on the species, moray eels can reach an age of about ten to thirty years.