Sunday, July 1, 2012

Snub-nosed Spiny Eel

Notocanthus chemnitzii
Today's critter, the Snub-nosed Spiny Eel is found in oceans all around the world... well, except for in tropical areas. They prefer colder waters, and are usually found at depths of more than 200m-- though individuals have been found as deep as 2,500m!

Snub-nosed Spiny Eels aren't actually true Eels at all. Though they share the same Class, they belong to two completely different Orders. All members of the Spiny Eel order are deep sea dwellers, and are not quite as long as true Eels are.

The Snub-nosed Spiny Eels are solitary fish, rather than schooling ones. They feed primarily on different Sea Anemones, and have compact, serrated teeth that allow them to get at their meals easier. Colors vary greatly within this species, and they range from shades of tan and brown all the way to slate grey.

We don't know very much about the population size of these deep sea fish, mostly because they live in such remote areas. They are not currently listed by the IUCN.

IUCN Status : Not Listed
Location : Oceans Worldwide
Size : Length up to 47in (1.2m)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Actinopterygii -- Order : Notacanthiformes
Family : Notacanthidae -- Genus : Notacanthus -- Species : N. chemnitzii

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