A new species of moray eel, Gymnothorax shaoi, is described here based on ten specimens collected in southeastern Taiwan. The new muraenid is distinct from its most similar species, Gymnothorax fimbriatus, in the character combinations of having brown body color, dark brown spots in at least three rows on body side and spots on posterior dorsal and caudal fin not forming oblique streaks; paler rictus, jaws, and inner mouth; fins without pale margins; no bend in lower jaw; fewer total vertebrae; and smaller in maximum body size. G. shaoi’s eyes have yellow to orange irises, body with dark reddish brown spots, and no yellow mucus on the top of head when alive. G. shaoi also differs from another similar species, G. reevesii, in several characteristics: smaller body depth, longer snout length, absence of pale posterior nostrils, with a few dark brown dots on the dorsal fin, no blackish margins on fins, and has more inner maxillary and inner dentary teeth.
Chen, Hong-Ming and Loh, Kar-Hoe
"GYMNOTHORAX SHAOI, A NEW SPECIES OF MORAY EEL (ANGUILLIFORMES: MURAENIDAE) FROM SOUTHEASTERN TAIWAN,"
Journal of Marine Science and Technology: Vol. 15:
2, Article 2.
Available at: https://jmstt.ntou.edu.tw/journal/vol15/iss2/2