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Species: Ophidion selenops, Mooneye Cusk-eel

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

eye large
snout - 2 spines
D 132-140
A 123-129
nape - dark anchor
mid-side - +/- dark stripe
gill rakers 0+4

Ophidion selenops Robins & Bohlke, 1959

Mooneye Cusk-eel

Elongate, compressed; head compressed; eye large; snout with a short, backward pointing spine behind a larger finger-shaped forward and down pointing spine; teeth on sides of roof of mouth in 2 rows in large fish; 4 lower gill rakers; operculum with a strong, hidden spine; dorsal and anal fins continuous with tail; dorsal fin 132-140; anal fin 123-129; pelvic fins (each with 2 rays of unequal length) inserted under eye; scales smooth, elongate, not overlapping, at right angles rather than regular series, none on head; scales at rear of tail are small, few and scattered; lateral line along most of body.

Pale, a dark line along top of back before dorsal fin meets a dark anchor-shaped mark at rear of head; sometimes a dark line along midside of body and tail.

Reaches 10 cm.

Benthic on sand bottoms.

Depth range: 20-307 m.

S Carolina to the Gulf of Mexico.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Soft bottom only
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • West Atlantic Endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Extends North of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 10
Depth Range Min
  • 20
Depth Range Max
  • 307