Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Gymnothorax nigromarginatus, Blackedge Moray

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snout blunt, jaws short
brown + well separated small white spots
D & A with body colors + black edges
top jaw 3 pores
teeth triangular, serrated, no canines

Gymnothorax nigromarginatus (Girard, 1858)

Blackedge Moray

Body elongate, compressed at rear; tail tapering; head elongate, snout moderate and blunt; mouth short; head and trunk shorter than to slightly >1/2 TL; eye large, over middle of mouth; front nostril a simple tube; rear nostril a hole at level of profile of head; lower jaw straight, mouth closes completely; teeth large, triangular, compressed, serrated, in a single series on jaws; top front of mouth with 1 tooth at center and 2 large teeth on each side behind that, then 8-10 main jaw teeth on each side, those becoming increasingly smaller at rear; back of roof of mouth with a row of small, conical hidden teeth; lower jaw with 9-16 teeth on each side, the first 4 abruptly larger than those behind; gill opening round; dorsal and anal fins covered with skin, but evident; dorsal origin on head, before gill opening; 3 pores along top jaw.

Brown, with uniform sized, well separated small white to yellow spots on upper head and body; lower head and belly pale; a dark ring around eye; dorsal and anal fins with body pattern on inner half and dark margins; tip of tail pale.

Reaches 99 cm.

Lives on soft bottoms and seagrass beds.

Depth range: 10-100 m.

Transatlantic, the eastern USA, Brazil.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • Transatlantic (East+West Atlantic)
Regional Endemism
  • Extends North of GC
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 99
Depth Range Min
  • 10
Depth Range Max
  • 100