Spotted Moray, Gymnothorax isingteena (Richardson 1843)

Other Names: Black-spotted Moray, Indo-Pacific Spotted Moray, Spotted Moray Eel
A whitish moray covered in small, round dark spots.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2018, Gymnothorax isingteena in Fishes of Australia, accessed 25 May 2024,

Spotted Moray, Gymnothorax isingteena (Richardson 1843)

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Coral Bay to northern Western Australia, Ashmore Reef, Timor Sea, New Year Island, Northern Territory, and One Tree Island, Great Barrier Reef, Queensland. Elsewhere the species occurs in the Indo-West Pacific, from the Comores and Mauritius (Mascarenes), Indonesia, Vietnam, north to Taiwan, Korea and Japan, and south to northern Australia.
Inhabits coastal reefs and outer reef slopes, often seen protruding from coral outcrops in depths to 100 m.


In Australia, this species has been misidentified as the Tessellate Moray, Gymnothorax favagineus, and Gymnothorax melanospilus. G. melanospilus is a junior synonym of G. isingteena.

Species Citation

Muraena isingteena Richardson 1845, Zool. Voy. H. M. S. Sulphur: 108, Pl. 48 (fig. 1). Type locality: Canton, China (as China seas). 


Bray, D.J. 2018

Spotted Moray, Gymnothorax isingteena (Richardson 1843)


Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls. (as Gymnothorax melanospilus)

Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp.

Böhlke, E.B. & McCosker, J.E. 2001. The moray eels of Australia and New Zealand, with the description of two new species (Anguilliformes: Muraenidae). Records of the Australian Museum 53: 71-102 figs 1-10 DOI:10.3853/j.0067-1975.53.2001.1325 Open access

Böhlke, E.B., McCosker, J.E. & Smith, D.G. 1999. Family Muraenidae. pp. 1643-1657 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, V.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 3 pp. 1397-2068.

Böhlke, E.B. & Smith, D.G. 2002. Type catalogue of Indo-Pacific Muraenidae. Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 152: 89-172.[0089:TCOIPM]2.0.CO;2 Open access

Ho, H.-C., McCosker, J.E., Smith, D.G. & Shao, K.-T. 2015. Introduction to the systematics and biodiversity of eels (orders Anguilliformes and Saccopharyngiformes) of Taiwan. Zootaxa 4060(1): 5-18. DOI:

Hutchins, J.B. 2001. Checklist of the fishes of Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement 63: 9-50.

Kuiter, R.H. & Tonozuka, T. 2001. Pictorial guide to Indonesian reef fishes. Part 1. Eels- Snappers, Muraenidae - Lutjanidae. Australia : Zoonetics pp. 1-302.

Richardson, J. 1845. Ichthyology. pp. 51-150, pls 35-64 in Hinds, R.B. (ed.) The Zoology of the Voyage of H.M.S. Sulphur under the Command of Captain Sir Edward Belcher, during the years 1836–42. London : Smith, Elder & Co. Vol. 1(3).

Richardson, J. 1845. Ichthyology. pp. 87-150 pls 44-64 in Hinds, R.B. (ed.) The Zoology of the Voyage of H.M.S. Sulphur under the Command of Captain Sir Edward Belcher, during the years 1836–42. London : Smith, Elder & Co. Vol. 1(3).

Smith, D.G. 2012. A checklist of the moray eels of the world (Teleostei: Anguilliformes: Muraenidae). Zootaxa 3474: 1-64. Download PDF

Richardson, J. 1846. Report on the ichthyology of the seas of China and Japan. Report of the 15th meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science 1845: 187-320 (as Gymnothorax isengleena) Ref at BHL

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37060043

Depth:1-100 m

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:180 cm TL

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map