Shorefishes of the Eastern Pacific online information system

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Family: ANGUILLIDAE, Freshwater Eels

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

lower jaw projecting
lips thick
D origin well behind pectorals
adult - small, imbedded scales
teeth minute, in bands
large pectorals
LL complete





Aguillids are moderately large eels (to 1.5 m) with a robust body, compressed at rear; mouth reaching to under rear edge of eye, lower jaw projecting; lips thick; teeth minute, in bands on jaws and front of roof of mouth; with large pectoral fins; dorsal fin origin well behind large pectoral fin; dorsal and anal fins continuous with tail fin; lateral line complete but pores very small; small imbedded scales arranged in basket-weave pattern present in adults but not juveniles.

Adults live in fresh to brackish water and migrate long distances to spawning grounds in deep gyres in the open ocean; larvae marine.

With one genus with about 19 species; worldwide (except without a resident population in the eastern Pacific) in tropical to temperate waters.