Zoological Studies

Vol. 58, 2019

(update: 2019.12.6; 12.18)

A New Species of the Snake Eel Genus Ophichthus, with Additional Records from Viet Nam (Anguilliformes: Ophichthidae)

Quang Van Vo1,2,*, Yusuke Hibino3, and Hsuan-Ching Ho4


1Institute of Oceanography, Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology (VAST), Vietnam
2Graduate University of Science and Technology (GUST), VAST, Vietnam. *Correspondence: E-mail: quangvanvo@gmail.com
3Kitakyushu Museum of Natural History and Human History, Kitakyushu, Fukuoka, Japan. E-mail: yusukeelology@gmail.com
4National Museum of Marine Biology & Aquarium, Pingtung, Taiwan. E-mail: ogcoho@gmail.com

Received 20 August 2019 / Accepted 28 November 2019
Communicated by Hin-Kiu Mok

A new species of snake eel, Ophichthus vietnamensis sp. nov., is described on the basis of two specimens collected from off Ky Ha, central coast of Viet Nam. The new species is distinguishable from four similar congeners by having two preopercular pores, a less elongate body (both depth 20–25 times in TL) and the following combination of characters: tail length 56% TL; teeth moderately large and conical, biserial along the entire upper jaw, biserial anteriorly and uniserial posteriorly on lower jaw, uniserial on vomer, and total vertebrae 121–130. Five Ophichthus species are also found in Vietnamese waters, including O. asakusae, O. erabo, O. lithinus, O. rutidoderma and O. urolophus. Detailed descriptions are provided for all species.

Key words: Pisces, Taxonomy, Ichthyology, Snake eel, New species.

Citation: Vo QV, Hibino Y, Ho HC. 2019. A new species of the snake eel genus Ophichthus, with additional records from Viet Nam (Anguilliformes: Ophichthidae). Zool Stud 58:43. doi:10.6620/ZS.2019.58-.43.