Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

Español  Contact

Species: Enchelycore nigricans, Viper Moray

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

rear nostril large, elongate, well before eye
large fish brown
juveniles - brown + pale polygons
jaws long, arched, meet only at tips
long fangs
2-5 inner lower jaw teeth

Enchelycore nigricans (Bonnaterre, 1788)

Viper Moray

Body stout; head and trunk equal to or shorter than tail; head large and muscular; eye large, at about middle of mouth; front nostril a simple tube, rear nostril a large elongate hole well before eye; snout long and narrow; jaws slender, narrow, strongly arched and meeting only at tips, fangs exposed when jaws are closed; teeth conical sharp, top jaw with inner row of widely separated long fangs and an outer row of close-set shorter teeth along length of jaws, between front jaws with 3 rows of ~5 large fangs, inner row depressible, surrounded by an outer row of smaller teeth; lower jaw with inner row of 2-5 large teeth and outer row of small teeth along its length; roof of mouth with a single row of small teeth; lower jaw with inner row only at front; dorsal and anal fins very evident, dorsal origin over or a little behind gill opening.

Large individuals: uniform dark brown with a dark iris; small fish: mid-brown, with irregular polygonal blotches on a pale background, dark between eyes and a dark band across nape, iris pale.

Reaches 100 cm.

Found on reefs.

Depth range: 1-115 m.

Bermuda to Brazil; the tropical E Atlantic.

High Resolution Map Download

Species Data Create Report Export as Word File Export as Excel File
  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • Transatlantic (East+West Atlantic)
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 100
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 115