Three new Eel species discovered along the coast of Bay of Bengal

A Zoological Survey of India ( ZSI) scientist Anil Mohapatra, along with other scientist have have discovered three new species of Eel along the northern Bay of Bengal coast. Newly discovered eel species, as published in the journal Zootaxa, are:

  1. Gymnothorax pseudotile:  It is a brown colour eel, about the size of 1 feet to 1.5 feet long, discovered at the Digha coast of the Bay of Bengal.
  2.  Enchelycore propinqua: A reddish brown body mottled with irregular creamy white spots eel was discovered from the Visakhapatnam coast of the Bay of Bengal. It is the smallest of three measuring less than a foot. It is a relatively rare eel species. 
  3. Gymnothorax visakhaensis: It is a uniformly brownish eel discovered from the Visakhapatnam coast of the Bay of Bengal. It is about a foot long. 

About the Eel species

  • Eels are found mostly at the bottom of rivers and seas.
  • Across the world about 1,000 species of eels have been discovered.
  • In India 125 species of eels are found.
  • For species belonging to the family Muraenidae, referred commonly as -Out of 1000 species,  Moray eels are found across the world. There are records of about 200 Moray eel species of which more than 30 species are found in India.

About Electric Eel

  • As per the IUCN, Electric Eel or E. electricus is a benthopelagic (area of water not near the bottom) (ecological region at the lowest level of water body), nocturnal species that generally inhabits the muddy bottoms of rivers, streams, pools and swamps, favouring deeply shaded areas. This species is an obligatory air breather and can withstand poorly oxygenated water. This species occurs in the Amazon and Orinoco River basins.

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