|Inshore hagfish at the market in Busan|
The inshore hagfish (Eptatretus burgeri) is a hagfish found in the Northwest Pacific, from the Sea of Japan and across eastern Japan to Taiwan. It has six pairs of gill pouches and gill apertures. These hagfish are found in the sublittoral zone. They live usually buried in the bottom mud and migrate into deeper water to spawn. The inshore hagfish is the only member of the Myxinidae family having a seasonal reproductive cycle.
Generally very little is known about hagfish reproduction and embryos are difficult to obtain for study, although laboratory breeding of Eptatretus burgeri, has succeeded.
The hide of this hagfish is processed into "eel skin" in Korea and exported worldwide.
Usually, hagfish are not eaten, but this particular species is valued as food in the Korean Peninsula and among the Koreans in Japan. It is known as pú shì nián máng mán (布氏粘盲鰻, 無目鰻, 蒲氏粘盲鰻, 青眠鰻, 龍筋, 鰻背) in Mandarin, kkomjangeo (꼼장어) or meokjangeo (먹장어) in Korean, and nuta-unagi in Japanese.
As with all hagfish, the inshore hagfish produces slime when agitated. This is used in Korean cuisine in a similar way to egg whites and obtained by placing a live inshore hagfish into a container and knocking the container with a stick.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Eptatretus burgeri.|
- P. Ekanayake, Y. D. Lee & J. Lee Antioxidant Activity of Flesh and Skin of Eptatretus Burgeri (Hag Fish)
- Kawakoshi, A., Hyodo, S., Yasuda, A., & Takei, Y. (2003). A single and novel natriuretic peptide is expressed in the heart and brain of the most primitive vertebrate, the hagfish (Eptatretus burgeri). Journal of Molecular Endocrinology, 31 (1), 209"220.
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