Morays and other eels.

It is wise to remember Moray Eels are fish. Sounds silly. But Morays are SO different that it is worth remembering!

Morays do not have fish scales! Their skin is smooth and incredibly tough. Usually, they do not have ventral fins, anal fins and pectoral fins.

They do not have a large tail fin and their body is much elongated.

The dorsal fin often extends most of the way along their bodies. Mostly, they have lost the fin spines and fin rays.

Morays do not have gill covers. Their are nostrils above the mouth that draw in water. You can see loose skin where the gill cover should be.

Water can be drawn in and pumped out of a relatively small opening.

Morays are incredibly different to the stereotype fish.

 

 

Green Moray White eyed Moray
Green Moray is a very successful hunter. Three White Eyed Morays are being groomed by a Cleaner Shrimp, Lysmata amboinensis at South West Rocks.
Serpent Eels Blue Ribbon Eel
Serpent Eels live in a burrow in the sand. They use mucous to bind the sand and enter tail end first. Normally, you only see 25 to 30 cms. I found a dead one on a night dive at Shiprock. At first, I thought it was a pale white garden hose 2 and 1/2 metres long (8 feet) until I saw the head! There is a garden of a couple of dozen 2 metre Serpent Eels on the wreck of the Tuggerah off south Sydney. Blue ribbon Eels (from Fiji) have powerful mouths filled with backward pointing teeth. They live in holes in the coral and even though you may only see 10 cms, they usually grow to well over a metre long.