Fun Fangtooth Moray Eel Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
May 01, 2023 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Shray Sharma
Fangtooth moray eel facts are enjoyed by kids.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.1 Min

The moray eel is a family of eels that resembles a fish. They could be freshwater eels or eels found in marine water or brackish water. A group of moray eels consists of more than 200 species of eels and they are distributed all over the world. Fangtooth moray eels are known by the scientific name Enchelycore anatina and are one of the moray eel species found in oceans and seas. Fangtooth moray eels are named after their dangerous and spectacular sharp teeth that have a semi-transparent texture. They are also known by the names tiger moray and bird-eye conger. Fangtooth moray eels are distributed over a wide range of habitats. They are strictly marine eels that never swim into the realms of freshwater. Fangtooth moray eels live at shallow to moderate depths inside the water ranging between 0-197 ft (0-60 m). They are famous for having one of the deadliest sets of teeth in the ocean world and a very powerful jaw. Many divers look forward to encountering a fangtooth moray in their adventures. Keep on reading this content to know some fascinating fascinating facts about the fangtooth moray eels. For similar content check out these moray eel facts and lungfish facts too.

Fangtooth Moray Eel Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a fangtooth moray eel?

The Enchelycore anatina, or the fangtooth moray eel, is one of the 200 moray eel species.

What class of animal does a fangtooth moray eel belong to?

The fangtooth moray eel belongs to the class Actinopterygii, the common class for all ray-finned and bony fishes.

How many fangtooth moray eels are there in the world?

Fangtooth morays are very rarely observed. There is no information regarding the number of mature moray eel individuals. As they are uncommon, spotting these fish and determining their population is difficult. The moray eels do not have a highly fragmented population but their population trend is still unknown.

Where does a fangtooth moray eel live?

They are found in typically warm waters of the Atlantic Ocean, Mediterranean Sea, and many other islands. In the eastern Atlantic, these fish populate the Madeira, Canary Islands, Azores, St. Helena islands, Cape Verde, and Ascension. From there it extends to the eastern Mediterranean Sea. In the western part of the Atlantic Ocean, moray eels are found along the northeastern Florida coast, Bermuda, St. Paul's Rocks, and the Rio de Janeiro coast in Brazil.

What is a fangtooth moray eel's habitat?

Fangtooth moray eels favor warm water and therefore are found mostly inhabiting the tropical and subtropical waters closer to the equator. These fish are found in shallow water near the shores, and on continental slopes and shelves off the Atlantic Ocean. They occur among rocks and rubble and are well adapted to spend their lives in the layers of coral reefs. They hide under rocks and crevices of the ocean floors and come out at the site of their prey like crustaceans.  

Who do fangtooth moray eels live with?

Moray eels are highly aggressive fish. They are very aggressive towards other fishes including their type. For this reason, they prefer to stay in solitude and only come in contact with another eel during mating.

How long does a fangtooth moray eel live?

Moray eels have an average lifespan of 10-40 years. Therefore, fangtooth morays also have a lifespan within this range.

How do they reproduce?

Moray eels perform oviparous reproduction. The female eel releases eggs while the male releases sperm in the water. The fertilization of the eggs by sperm occurs in the water itself, outside the womb. The female eels produce 10,000 eggs in a single clutch. After spawning occurs the larvae stay in the ocean being a part of the plankton. The larvae take around a year to grow big enough to survive in the ocean among all the predators and adult morays. The juvenile eel remains hidden in holes and crevices during its first few stages in the ocean.  

What is their conservation status?

Fangtooth moray eels are classified as a species of Least Concern in the IUCN Red List. The reason behind this classification is not their population, but the large range of the fish which does not let them fall under the vulnerable threshold. They do not have any major threats underwater except a few known predators like sharks and groupers.

Fangtooth Moray Eel Fun Facts

What do fangtooth moray eels look like?

Fangtooth moray eels display the most impressive teeth in their group. They have numerous transparent glass-like teeth in an elongated jaw. Their teeth are also visible when the jaw is closed. The snake-shaped slender body is marked with black and yellow stripes, For this reason, they are also given the name tiger moray. The morays have a dorsal fin that connects both the caudal and the anal fin.

How cute are they?

Eels do not have a very attractive appearance. The dagger-shaped teeth of the fangtooth eels make them look dangerous rather than cute.

How do they communicate?

Communication between the moray eels occurs visually or by chemical discharge. Chemicals released in the water help in creating a reaction in the eels by detecting signals.

How big is a fangtooth moray eel?

Fangtooth moray eels can grow up to a length of 47 in (120 cm). They are two times smaller in size than the giant moray.

How fast can a fangtooth moray eel swim?

The body shape of these eels lets them glide through water easily causing less friction. However, their speed has not been determined.

How much does a fangtooth moray eel weigh?

Fangtooth moray eels weigh on average around 30 lb (13.6 kg).

What are the male and female names of the species?

The male and female eels do not have any specific names. They are called fangtooth moray eels.

What would you call a baby fangtooth moray eel?

An eel in its larval stage is called leptocephalus, while a juvenile one is called an elver.

What do they eat?

The fangtooth moray has a high prey drive. They mainly prey on small fish, shrimp, and crustaceans that swim by their hiding sites

Are they poisonous?

Fangtooth moray eels are poisonous. When it bites it releases a small amount of toxin into its prey. Although their exact toxicity has not been determined yet, it is believed to be a very low value.

Would they make a good pet?

Fangtooth moray eels are undoubtedly dangerous fishes and keeping them as pets is a big challenge. However, many instances of keeping these eels have been recorded and marine aquarists are quite fond of moray eels as pets. As far as the owners pay attention and necessary measures are taken for bite prevention, they can be treated as wonderful aquarium pets.

Did you know...

Juvenile moray eels are eaten in many places. The wonderful flavor and soft skin are a delicacy for many if cooked properly.

Fangtooth moray eel bites

Fangtooth moray bites can be very painful, more than other predatory fish of the same size. The wounds caused by the fangtooth moray eel attack bleed a lot. As a result, their bites are prone to cause severe infections if not treated properly. Fangtooth moray eels of larger size are also capable of tearing out chunks of flesh with a single bite. Other than that, toxins are also found in the bodies of fangtooth morays which are harmful to any human.

Fangtooth moray eels and humans

Fangtooth moray eels are certainly dangerous predators but they do not form much of a threat to human life. Most records of fangtooth moray attacks on divers have been provoked. They remain peaceful until and unless they feel threatened by human activities. There are no prevalent records of anyone being killed by a fangtooth eel bite. If kept as pets, a distance must be maintained from the fangtooth moray eel aquarium while feeding them, keeping the safety precautions in mind

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created many interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other fish including fangtooth facts and angular roughshark facts.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our Fangtooth Moray Eel coloring page.

Fangtooth Moray Eel Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Small fish, shrimp, and crustaceans

What Type of Animal were they?


Average Litter Size?

10,000 eggs

How Much Did They Weigh?

30 lb (13.6 kg)

What habitat Do they Live In?

marine environment

Where Do They Live?

atlantic ocean and mediterranean sea

How Long Were They?

47 in (120 cm)

How Tall Were They?








Scientific Name

Enchelycore anatina

What Do They Look Like?

Black and yellow

Skin Type

Wet scales

What Are Their Main Threats?

barracudas, humans, sharks

What is their Conservation Status?

Least Concern
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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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