Myxini (hagfishes) > Myxiniformes
(Hagfishes) > Myxinidae
(Hagfishes) > Eptatretinae
Etymology: Eptatretus: hepta (Gr.), seven; tretos (Gr.), perforated (i.e., with holes), referring to seven gill apertures on what would later be described as Homea banksii (=E. cirrhatus) [range within genus is 6-14 pairs of gill apertures]. (See ETYFish); stoutii: In honor of Arthur B. Stout (1814-1898), surgeon and corresponding secretary of the California Academy of Sciences [see box, below]. (See ETYFish).
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; demersal; non-migratory; depth range 16 - 966 m (Ref. 96339). Temperate; 58°N - 20°N, 137°W - 105°W
Eastern Pacific: southeastern Alaska to Bahia San Pablo, central Baja California, Mexico.
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 42.0  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 63.5 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 96339)
Morphology | Morphometrics
soft rays: 0. No true fins - one dorsal finfold, far back, median, very low, continuous with caudal; caudal broad, rounded; ventral finfold very low, origin somewhat posterior to last gill pore, extending to anus (Ref. 6885). Dark brown, tan, gray, or brownish red, often tinted with blue or purple, never black, lighter ventrally, rarely with large patches of white; preserved specimens light brown (Ref. 6885).
Inhabits fine silt and clay bottoms (Ref. 6885). Enters large fishes by way of the mouth and anus and feed on its viscera and muscles (Ref. 6885). May greatly diminish catches taken with fixed gears (Ref. 6885). Produces mucilaginous slime when harassed (Ref. 6885). Probably exhibits hermaphroditism (Ref. 56947). Due to its primitive metabolism it is collected for research purposes (Ref. 6885).
Copulatory organ absent (Ref. 51361). Presence of bisexual juvenile gonad, requires further investigation regarding hermaphroditism (Ref. 56947). In one study (Ref. 40710), hermaphroditism is exhibited by only 0.2% of the individuals studied.
Fernholm, B., 1998. Hagfish systematics. p. 33-44. In J.M. Jørgensen, J.P. Lomholt, R.E. Weber and H. Malte (eds.) The biology of hagfishes. Chapman & Hall, London. 578 p. (Ref. 31276)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 126983)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: of no interest; aquarium: public aquariums
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 123201
): 5.8 - 9.4, mean 7.1 °C (based on 54 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82804
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00282 (0.00166 - 0.00478), b=2.88 (2.73 - 3.03), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 4.2 ±0.70 se; based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Low, minimum population doubling time 4.5 - 14 years (Fec = 28).
Fishing Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Moderate to high vulnerability (45 of 100).