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Type: Article
Published: 2015-03-30
Page range: 49–78
Abstract views: 44
PDF downloaded: 2

A review of the finless snake eels of the genus Apterichtus (Anguilliformes: Ophichthidae), with the description of five new species

California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco, California, United States.
Fisheries Research Laboratory, Mie University, Mie, Japan.
Pisces Ophichthidae Apterichtus


The 18 species of finless snake eels of the genus Apterichtus (family Ophichthidae, subfamily Ophichthinae) are reviewed. Included are: A. anguiformis from the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic; A. ansp from the Carolinas to Brazil in the western Atlantic; A. australis from South and Central Pacific islands, including Japan; A. caecus from the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic; A. equatorialis from the eastern Pacific; A. flavicaudus from Hawaii, Midway Island, and possibly Australia and Seychelles; A. gracilis from the eastern central Atlantic; A. hatookai from Japan and China; A. kendalli from the western Atlantic and St. Helena Island; A. klazingai from South Africa to Hawaii; A. monodi from the eastern Atlantic; A. moseri from Japan; and A. orientalis from Japan. Five new species are described and illustrated: A. dunalailai from Vanuatu and Fiji at 291–450 m; A. jeffwilliamsi from Vanuatu at 4–16 m; A. malabar from New South Wales, Australia at 44–66 m; A. mysi from the Marquesas Islands at 35–64 m; and A. nariculus from Ambon Island, Indonesia at 28–30 m. A neotype is designated for Apterichtus caecus. An identification key is provided. The synonymy of the genus Apterichtus is reviewed. Apterichtus keramanus Machida, Hashimoto & Yamakawa 1997, is referred to ----------------Ichthyapus.