Gymnothorax meleagris (Shaw, 1795)
Gymnothorax meleagris (Shaw, 1795)
Genus: ,

Scientific Name: Gymnothorax meleagris

English Name: Turkey moray

Creole Name:

French Name: Murène voie lactée

IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC)


: Dorsal spines: 0; Dorsal rays: 0; Anal spines: 0; Anal rays: 0; Vertebrae: 127-132.

Body strong, muscular, moderately elongate, cylindrical in front, compressed along tail. Head with a steep profile; snout rounded but not blunt; eye relatively small; anterior nostril a short tube, posterior nostril a simple hole with a raised rim. 2 rows of very sharp teeth on jaws the inner series larger. A group of very large, sharp, depressible teeth at front of upper jaw, similar teeth on front of lower jaw. A single row of smaller but sharp teeth on roof of mouth. Dorsal fin originating on head before gill opening.

Colour. Brown to purplish brown body covered with numerous small yellow to white spots becoming less dense posteriorly. Interior of mouth white. Gill opening black. Tip of tail yellow or orange.


Maturity: Lm unknown. Range unknown. Max Length: 120cm TL. Commonly to 80cm TL.

Habitat and Ecology:

Inhabits coral-rich areas of lagoon and seaward reefs (Depth 1-50m). Feeds on fish and crustaceans. Individuals often seen hunting on exposed reefs at low tide. Juveniles are often found in intertidal zones

Fishery Status:

This species is not protected or subject to fishery regulations. Though it is presumably vulnerable to the trap fishery, a 5-year survey of the Victoria market catch did record this species in the catch.


Photos courtesy of Krishna Ashok.


Bray, D.J. Gymnothorax meleagris in Fishes of Australia, (27/04/20).

Fischer, W. & G. Bianchi (eds), (1984).  FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean; (Fishing Area 51). Prepared and printed with the support of the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA). Rome, Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, vols 1-6.

Froese, R. & D. Pauly. Eds. 2019. FishBase. (27/04/20).

Smith, D.G. et al 2019. Gymnothorax meleagris. The IUCN Red List 2019: e.T195754A2412930. (27/04/20).


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