Scolecenchelys laticaudata (Ogilby, 1897)
Redfin worm-eel
photo by Winterbottom, R.

Family:  Ophichthidae (Snake eels), subfamily: Myrophinae
Max. size:  35 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  reef-associated; marine; depth range 1 - 26 m
Distribution:  Indo-Pacific: Indo-Pacific Ocean, widespread, from Mozambique, north to Kikai-jima Island, Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan, east to Cook Islands, including the Red Sea.
Diagnosis:  Vertebrae: 135-146. This species of the Scolecenchelys gymnota species group is distinguished by the following set of characters: head 9.9-12 % TL; tail 54-58 % TL; body depth 2.0-4.0 % TL; snout 15-20 % HL; horizontal distance between dorsal-fin origin and a vertical through mid-anus 3.5-46 % HL; blunt snout; rictus of mouth anterior to or just below a vertical through posterior margin of eye; upper-jaw teeth arranged biserially and vomer only a single row or rarely biserial anteriorly; predorsal vertebrae 54-63, preanal 54-58, total 135-146; MVF 59-56-139 (Ref. 104540). Description: Characterized by pale greyish color, sometimes with reddish fins; no pectoral fins; dorsal and anal fins confluent with caudal fin; soft and flexible tail tip; small and sharp teeth (Ref. 90102).
Biology:  Inhabits reef flats and lagoon and seaward reefs (Ref. 1602). Forms congregations in confined sandy areas of sandy bottoms (Ref. 30874). Minimum depth reported taken from Ref. 30874.
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 27 November 2019 Ref. (124695)
Threat to humans:  harmless
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