Turkey moray

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Turkey moray
Gymnothorax meleagris.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Anguilliformes
Family: Muraenidae
Genus: Gymnothorax
Species: G. meleagris
Binomial name
Gymnothorax meleagris
(G. Shaw, 1795)

The turkey moray (Gymnothorax meleagris),also known as the guineafowl moray or as the white-mouth/whitemouth moray is a species of marine fish in the family Muraenidae.


The turkey moray is a medium size moray which can reach a maximum length of 120 cm, but specimens usually encountered are much smaller.[1] Its serpentine in shape body has a dark brown to black background color dotted with numerous small white spots uniformly distributed. The inside of its mouth is completely white.

Distribution & habitat[edit]

The white-mouth moray is widespread throughout the Indo-Pacific area from eastern coast of Africa, Red Sea included, until Polynesia and Hawaii and from south Japan to New Caledonia.[2] This is a relatively rare moray even within its distribution area except in Hawaii , where it seems to be common.[3]

It likes shallow waters from lagoons and reefs rich in coral and fish life until 36 meters (118 feet) deep,[4] spending time in holes in the reef to quickly emerge to grasp passing fish by surprise attack. They sense prey by detecting smell through the water.


The turkey moray seems to be equally active day and night and feeds on small fish and occasionally crustaceans.[5]


  1. ^ Myers, R.F., 1991. Micronesian reef fishes. Second Ed. Coral Graphics, Barrigada, Guam. 298 p.
  2. ^ Myers, R.F. 1991 Micronesian reef fishes. Second Ed. Coral Graphics, Barrigada, Guam. 298 p.
  3. ^ http://doris.ffessm.fr/fiche2.asp?fiche_numero=1565
  4. ^ Kuiter, R.H., 1998. Photo guide to fishes of the Maldives. Atoll Editions, Victoria, Australia. 257 p.
  5. ^ Hobson, E.S., 1974. Feeding relationships of teleostean fishes on coral reefs in Kona, Hawaii. Fish. Bull. 72(4):915-1031.

External links[edit]