True eels are ray-finned fish that belong to the Anguilliformes order which is found under the bony vertebrates classification. Found in the Indo-Pacific area around reefs, this type of eel eats mostly mollusks, crustaceans, and sea urchins. Only the fresh water eels (Angullidae) are seen to be of economic importance and are valued as food. These Indo-Pacific morays only measure about 20 inches long and live about four years, making them a popular saltwater aquarium pet when paired with larger, aggressive fish. There are nearly a thousand species of true eels, including morays, congers, snake eels, freshwater eels, and deep-sea eels. Feeding mostly on finfish, the Grey Conger was first noticed in the mid-1800s, and it is found in the Atlantic Ocean, including areas such as South America, Jamaica, and Cuba. They’re also the only freshwater species native to the U.S. The Grey Conger ranges from three feet to a little over five feet in length and has a head that looks similar to a catfish. Differences Between Freshwater and Saltwater Eels, Three Types of Mammals (Plus Examples for Each). Not to be confused with the giant moray, this species grows up to 13 feet in length, making them the longest of the morays. Just like the two previous species, the Black Spotted Eel comes from the Mastacembelidae family. The spots are darker at the top of the eel, but they get lighter as they go down the body. Cone Heels American eel (Anguilla rostrata). This family of eels are known as snake eels and consist of 62 known genera. Their weight ranges from 30 grams to 25 kgs while there can be gray eels or black eels to colorful ones. There are several species of eels, which fall into the families of either freshwater or saltwater eels. There are about 200 species of moray out there. Types of Freshwater Eel Black Spotted Eel. On a longfin eel, the dorsal (top) fin extends a lot further forward than the anal (bottom) fin. It must surface approximately every ten minutes to breathe, as they actually require air. A distinguishing feature of a snake eel is the tail- it’s pointed and sharp. They prefer reef flats and seagrass beds, and range in depth from shallow lagoons to over 260 feet. They have voracious appetites, and their fantastic sense of smell helps them find their prey. _g1.classList.remove('lazyload'); Eels come in an assortment of sizes – ranging from about 5 inches long when fully grown to over 13 feet in length. They can be found in various types of water, including brackish, saltwater, and freshwater bodies of water. They’re born in saltwater and migrate inland where they spend most of the first 20 years feeding and growing. _g1.setAttribute('srcset', _g1.getAttribute('data-srcset')); It is a part of the Conger genus. Their heads are very similar to that of the catfish, and their preferred diet is fin fish and small fish. They have a muddy appearance with a greyish-brown dorsal fin that fades to white at the ventral area. try { All told there are 12 genera and, over 200 species across this broad group, more than any other fishy family except perhaps the wrasses. It has a purple- or pinkish-brown color, and it can live anywhere between five and 12 years. These eels are often referred to as Tulip eels – the way they hang in a vertical position with the head inflated resembles a tulip! The main species cultured in NSW is the Long Finned Eel as this is the one that receives the highest price and demand in this region. 2. In fact, when in captivity the Snowflake Moray can live for four years or even longer. Another species of Anguilla, the American eel (Anguilla rostrata) lives in the US and is believed to be the true identity of Champ, the serpentine monster of Lake Champlain. Snake eels are representatives of more than 200 species found throughout the world, mostly in tropical or temperate waters. Like the Lungfish, which also has an elongated body, the Electric Eel needs air to breathe and will rise to the surface of the water every 10 minutes in order to gulp air. It lives over 250 feet below the surface of the ocean and can be found in waters near East Africa, the Easter Islands, south of Japan and northern Australia, to name a few. Freshwater Eels are the only catadromous fishes in North America. The Giant Moray is found in the Indo-Pacific region living in reefs. Conger Eels. Freshwater eels and marine eels (anago, conger eel) are commonly used in Japanese cuisine; foods such as unadon and unajuu are popular but expensive.Eels are also very popular in Chinese cuisine and are prepared in many different ways. Originating from Asia, the Tire Track Eel has very distinct, dark-black markings that look like tires. These strange eels have a lifespan of up to 12 years. They also have very strong jaws and sharp teeth. They also tend to be poisonous if ingested by humans. Native to freshwater in Southeast Asia, fire eel is a relatively large species of spiny eel. Comprising of several subspecies, Snyder’s morays are the smallest of all eels, measuring a mere four inches in length. Grant Heilman/Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. This eel has two rows of very sharp teeth and is brownish-grey in color, although it also has yellow on and below its fins, a black patch on the pectorals and on parts of its eye, and narrow black edges on its median fins. Another Indo-Pacific native, the giant moray is the largest moray species. They use their two rows of teeth to devour crustaceans and small fish, growing to approximately four feet in length. As its name suggests, the Zebra Moray looks similar to a zebra with its black-and-white stripes. Their facial features almost look prehistoric, and since they often swim in the deeper parts of the ocean that are quite muddy, their color helps them blend in so they do not attract predators. People often confuse morays and congers, despite them being very different in appearance (if you dare get close enough to check, that is). This is a bizarre sight, especially when several do so at the same time. In fact, in this species, it is the males that dig burrows to guard the nest of eggs after they are hatched. The moray and conger are common genuses of marine eels, in which many species exist with varying colors, sizes, diets, and habitats. They are very active during the day and prefer foods such as crustaceans and fish that are near the bottom of the sea. Most eels are nocturnal, meaning they are most active and hunting at night. source: Eels that live in freshwater are from the family known as Anguillidae, which consists of 19 species and six subspecies. This eel is normally brown in color with irregular dark markings throughout its body. Conger (/ˈkɒŋɡər/ KONG-gər) is a genus of marine congrid eels. It is a close relative of the Zig Zag Eel, and it gets to roughly 2.5 feet in length. They’re native to the western Indo-Pacific region. Two freshwater eels belonging in the Anguillidae family are easily available for aquatic hobbyists. It is a durable but shy fish that is also very attractive, and they were first described in the mid-1970s. With their smaller size and less aggressive attitude, they make good aquarium pets, although don’t expect much diurnal activity from them. This includes all the popular species, such as the Moray eel, Spaghetti eel, American eel, European eel, and others. A large percentage of saltwater eels are dangerous, with many being poisonous or having some other defense mechanism that can be harmful or even fatal to humans. 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