Marbled Eel, Anguilla marmorata


Other Names: Giant Mottled Eel
Summary:
A large greyish-yellow freshwater eel becoming whitish below, with brownish to black marbling on the back, sides and fins. Juveniles are greyish to orange with the marbling is less visible. 

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2023, Anguilla marmorata in Fishes of Australia, accessed 13 Jun 2024, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/5706

Marbled Eel, Anguilla marmorata

More Info


Distribution

Queensland Wet Tropics, in coastal freshwater streams north and south of Cairns. Elsewhere the species is widespread in the Indo-west-central Pacific (South Africa, Madagascar and Mascarenes, southern Japan, New Caledonia and French Polynesia).

Features

Head rounded; snout depressed; lower jaw protruded; gill openings small; scales matted-like under skin; pectoral fin rounded; pelvic fin absent. 

Colour

Adults greyish-yellow becoming whitish below, with brownish to black marbling on the back. Juveniles are greyish to orange with marbling is less visible (Ref. 48622). Body color brown speckles scattered on back, sides and fins; yellow between speckles and edge of pectoral fin; belly white or pale blue (Ref. 45563). Head rounded; snout depressed; lower jaw protruded; gill openings small; scales matted-like under skin; pectoral fin rounded; pelvic fin absent (Ref. 45563). Distinguished from all other species by the mottled color and the long dorsal fin, which begins closer to the gill opening than to the anus

Similar Species

Differs from all other species in the genus Anguilla in having a marbled or mottled colour pattern, and in the long dorsal fin, that is closer to the gill opening than to the anus.

Etymology

The specific name is from the Latin marmorata (= marbled), in reference to the dark marbled colour pattern on the back and sides of this species.

Species Citation

Anguilla marmorata Quoy & Gaimard 1824, in Freycinet, Voyage autour du Monde: 241. Type locality:  Waigeo [Waigiou], Indonesia.

Author

Bray, D.J. 2023

Resources

Atlas of Living Australia

Marbled Eel, Anguilla marmorata

References


Arai, T. 2014. Evidence of local short-distance spawning migration of tropical freshwater eels, and implications for the evolution of freshwater eel migration. Ecology and Evolution 4: 3812–3819.  

Arai, T. & Chino, N. 2018. Opportunistic migration and habitat use of the giant mottled eel Anguilla marmorata (Teleostei: Elopomorpha). Scientific Reports 8(5666): 1–10.  

Arai, T., Limbong, D., Otake, T. & Tsukamoto, K. 1999. Metamorphosis and inshore migration of tropical eels Anguilla spp. in the Indo-Pacific. Marine Ecology Progress Series 182: 283-293.

Arai, T., Marui, M., Miller, M. & Tsukamoto, K. 2002. Growth history and inshore migration of the tropical eel, Anguilla marmorata, in the Pacific. Marine Biology 140(2): 309-316.

Gagnaire, P.-A., Minegishi, Y., Zenboudji, S., Valade, P., Aoyama, J. & Berrebi, P. 2011. Within-population structure highlighted by differential introgression across semipermeable barriers to gene flow in Anguilla marmorata. Evolution 65: 3413–3427.

Hagihara, S., Aoyama, J., Limbong, D. & Tsukamoto, K. 2018. Interspecific difference in downstream migratory season between two tropical eels, Anguilla celebesensis and Anguilla marmorata. Journal of Fish Biology 93(4): 729-732.

Hagihara, S., Aoyama, J., Limbong, D. and Tsukamoto, K. 2018. Interspecific and sexual differences in riverine distribution of tropical eels Anguilla spp. Journal of Fish Biology 93: 21-29.  

Hagihara, S., Aoyama, J., Limbong, D. and Tsukamoto, K. 2018. Age and growth of migrating tropical eels, Anguilla celebesensis and Anguilla marmorata. Journal of Fish Biology 92: 1526-1544.

Ishikawa, S., Tsukamoto, K. and Nishida, M. 2004. Genetic evidence for multiple geographic populations of the giant mottled eel Anguilla marmorata in the Pacific and Indian oceans. Ichthyological Research 51: 343-353.

Miller, M.J., Mochioka, N., Otake, T. & Tsukamoto, K. 2002. Evidence of a spawning area of Anguilla marmorata in the western North Pacific. Marine Biology 140: 809–814. 

Minegishi, Y., Aoyama, J. & Tsukamoto, K. 2008. Multiple population structure of the giant mottled eel, Anguilla marmorata. Molecular Ecology 17: 3109-3122.

Pike, C., Crook, V., Jacoby, D. & Gollock, M. 2020. Anguilla marmorata (amended version of 2019 assessment). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T166189A176493885. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2020-3.RLTS.T166189A176493885.en. Accessed on 01 March 2023.

Quoy, J.R.C. & Gaimard, J.P. 1824. Description des Poissons. Chapter IX. pp. 192-401 in Freycinet, L.C.D. de (ed.) Voyage autour du Monde, entrepris par ordre du Roi, exécuté sur les corvettes de S.M. Uranie et la Physicienne, pendant les années 1817, 1818, 1819 et 1820. Paris : Pillet Aîné Vol. 1 712 pp. 96 pls. 

Thuesen, P.A., Ebner, B.C., Larson, H.K., Keith, P., Silcock, R.M., Prince, J. & Russell, D.J. 2011. Amphidromy links a newly documented fish community of continental Australian streams, to oceanic islands of the west Pacific. PLoS ONE 6(10): e26685 (11 pages)

Quick Facts


Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Habitat:Freshwater streams

Max Size:200 cm TL (female)

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map