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Species: Ethadophis byrnei, Ordinary snake-eel

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D origin just before gill opening
LL arched between pores
V patch of teeth exposed under snout
lower jaw tip ends well behind front nostril

Ethadophis byrnei Rosenblatt and McCosker, 1970

Ordinary snake-eel

Very elongate, body depth at anus 1.3% of TL; head compressed; body cylindrical at front, compressed at rear; tail 49% of TL; snout rounded, overhanging well beyond lower jaw, which, ends well behind front nostrils, without a median longitudinal groove on underside; front nostril a short tube near tip of snout, rear nostril inside mouth just before eye, in a short tube with a front flap; eye small, over center of mouth; teeth small, conical, pointed, in single series on jaws and roof of mouth, a V of central front teeth exposed under overhanging snout; gill openings crescent shaped, vertical, low on sides, widely separated under throat; gill pouch expanded; dorsal and anal fins forming ridges below the skin; dorsal fin origin on head, < 1 snout length before gill opening; no pectorals; tip of tail finless, blunt and fleshy, dorsal and anal fin rays join tail fin rays underneath skin of tail; skin smooth, with papillae on front of head and tip of tail; lateral line from head to near tip of tail, line arches upward between each pore; 189 vertebrae.

Color in life pink, finely speckled with black dots; grey with a white dorsal fin ridge when preserved.

Length 51cm.

Depth 0-3 m.

Habitat: Intertidal sand flat.

Known only from the holotype collected in the NE Gulf of California.

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  • Brackish
  • Non Marine
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Beach
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom only
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
FishBase Habitat
  • Demersal
Feeding Group
  • No Data
  • Carnivore
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Bony fishes
  • No Data
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
  • East Pacific endemic
  • All species
Regional Endemism
  • Continental TEP endemic
  • TEP endemic
  • All species
  • Continent only
  • Continent
  • Cortez province endemic
  • Vagrant
Climate Zone
  • North Temperate (Californian Province &/or Northern Gulf of California)
IUCN Red List
  • Data deficient
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Depth Range Min
  • 0
Depth Range Max
  • 200
Length Max
  • 51