D I S C O V E R    L I F E   
Bee Hunt! Odonata Lepidoptera 
  HomeAll Living ThingsIDnature guidesGlobal mapperAlbumsLabelsSearch
  AboutNewsEventsResearchEducationProjectsStudy sitesHelp

Monopterus albus (Zuiew, 1793)
Flutea alba Zuiew, 1793; Monopterus javanensis Lacépède, 1800; Muraena alba Zuiew, 1793; Swamp Eel; Asian Swamp Eel; Asian-swamp Eel; Rice Eel

Life   Vertebrata   Fish   Synbranchidae   Monopterus

Click on map for details about points.

go to Discover Life's Facebook group

Following modified from Australian Faunal Directory
   Top | See original

http://biodiversity.org.au/afd/taxa/c52e95f5-1666-44e6-b99e-cc8e3a2c69f7 ---> https://biodiversity.org.au/afd/taxa/c52e95f5-1666-44e6-b99e-cc8e3a2c69f7
Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts

Australian Biological Resources Study

Australian Faunal Directory

You are here:  Environment home » Biodiversity » ABRS » AFD » ANIMALIA (Kingdom) » CHORDATA (Phylum) » VERTEBRATA (Subphylum) » GNATHOSTOMATA (Higher Taxon) » PISCES (Higher Taxon) » ACTINOPTERYGII (Class) » EUTELEOSTEI (Subdivision) » ACANTHOPTERYGII (Superorder) » SYNBRANCHIFORMES (Order) » SYNBRANCHIDAE (Family) » Monopterus Lacépède, 1800 (Genus) » Monopterus albus (Zuiew, 1793)

Species Monopterus albus (Zuiew, 1793)


Regional Maps

External Links

CAAB : 37285001 Taxon concept Monopterus_albus last modified 2014-02-19 17:18:46.117

Species Monopterus albus (Zuiew, 1793)


Compiler and date details

20 April 2011 - Dianne J. Bray, Douglass F. Hoese & Jennifer E. Gates


Taxonomic Decision for Synonymy


Generic Combinations





Extra Distribution Information

Cape York Peninsula to Townsville, QLD; tropical, west Pacific. The species is uncommon in Australia and may have been introduced. Monopterus albus is invasive in many parts of the world.

Note that conversion of the original AFD map of states, drainage basins and coastal and oceanic zones to IBRA and IMCRA regions may have produced errors. The new maps will be reviewed and corrected as updates occur. The maps may not indicate the entire distribution. See further details below.
IBRA and IMCRA regions (map not available)
drainage basins and coastal and oceanic zones (map not available)


Qld: Cape York Peninsula (CYP), Wet Tropics (WT)

Original AFD Distribution Data

Australian Region

  • Australia
    • Queensland: NE coastal

Distribution References

Ecological Descriptors



General References

Allen, G.R. 1989. Freshwater Fishes of Australia . Neptune, New Jersey : T.F.H. Publications 240 pp., 63 pls. [118]

Allen, G.R., Midgley, S.H. & Allen, M. 2002. Field Guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Australia . Perth : Western Australian Museum 394 pp. [173]

Hoese, D.F. & Gates, J.E. 2006. Family Synbranchidae. pp. 859-861 in Hoese, D.F., Bray, D.J., Paxton, J.R. & Allen, G.R. Fishes. In , Beesley, P.L. & Wells, A. (eds) Zoological Catalogue of Australia. Vol. 35 . Volume 35 Australia : ABRS & CSIRO Publishing Parts 1-3, 2178 pp. [860]

McCulloch, A.R. 1930. A check-list of the fishes recorded from Australia. Memoirs of the Australian Museum 5 (1–4): 1-534 [63] (as Flutea alba )

Merrick, J.R. & Schmida, G.E. 1984. Australian Freshwater Fishes Biology and Management . Sydney : J.R. Merrick 409 pp. figs 280 col. figs. [179]

Munro, I.S.R. 1961. Handbook of Australian fishes. Nos 1–42. Australian Fisheries Newsletter 15–17, 19, 20 : 1-172 [published as separates 1956–1961] [44] (308, as Flutea alba )

Pusey, B.J., Kennard, M.J. & Arthington, A.H. 2004. Freshwater Fishes of North-eastern Australia . Collingwood, Victoria : CSIRO Publishing 684 pp. [276]

Whitley, G.P. 1964. A survey of Australian Ichthyology. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 89 (1): 11-127 [36] (334)


Common Name References

Merrick, J.R. & Schmida, G.E. 1984. Australian Freshwater Fishes Biology and Management . Sydney : J.R. Merrick 409 pp. figs 280 col. figs. [179] ( Belut )

Seafood Services Australia 2008. Australian Fish Names Standard. http://www.fishnames.com.au/. ( Belut )


History of changes

Note that this list may be incomplete for dates prior to September 2013.
Published As part of group Action Date Action Type Compiler(s)
20-May-2011 20-May-2011 MODIFIED
12-Feb-2010 (import)

Accessibility | Disclaimer | Privacy | Freedom of information | © Commonwealth of Australia
Last modified: Wednesday, 19 February 2014 5:18:46 PM AEDT

Department of the Environment and Energy
GPO Box 787
Canberra ACT 2601 Australia
+61 (0)2 6274 1111 ABN

Our land. Our plan. Our future.
Australian Government  

Following modified from Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission
   Top | See original

&pull 20q v5.145 20180528: Error 500 Can't connect to nis.gsmfc.org:80 http://nis.gsmfc.org/nis_factsheet.php?toc_id=193

Following modified from Taiwan Biodiversity National Information Network
   Top | See original

Kingdom Animalia  
 Phylum Chordata  
 Class Actinopterygii  
 Order Synbranchiformes  
 Family Synbranchidae  
 Genus Monopterus  
  Monopterus albus    (Zuiew, 1793) 
Provider: Tseng, Chin-Tsian 
hierarchy tree    download xml    download txt    Chinese Page    
Synonyms: Aptergia immaculata Aptergia nigromaculata Apterigia immaculata Apterigia nigromaculata Apterigia saccogularis Fluta alba Gymnotus albus Monopterus alba Monopterus cinereus Monopterus helvolus Monopterus javanensis details
Citation: 臺灣魚類誌(沈等, 1993)
Character: Head moderately large, shaped like a blunt awl. Gill openings merged into a single slit underneath head. Mouth large and protractile, both upper and lower jaw with tiny teeth. Eyes small, covered by skin, on upper side of head; interorbital distance long. Body cylindrical, elongated like a snake, posterior laterally compressed, tampering to a slender point; scales absent; lateral line complete. Pectoral and pelvic fins absent; dorsal and anal fins reduced to a skin fold and confluent with caudal fin; caudal fin small. Plain colored, dark brown dorsally, yellowish ventrally; irregular dark spots spread all over the body. 
Habitat: Demersal, occurs in streamlets, canals, ponds, swamps and paddy fields, prefers slowing running water, burrows in moist earth and rests inside, can be kept alive for a period of time during dry season there. Can breath atmospheric air. Nocturnal predator, 
Distribution: Extensively distributed in eastern Asia and islands nearby, ranging from India to China. Abundant in western portion of Taiwan. 
Name Code: 382958
Suggested Link    The Fish Database of Taiwan    FishBase    Discover Life    World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS)    Global Invasive Species Database (GISD)  
User Response:   upload Comments    upload Photo
2012-10-20 U/L
Previous Page       Home Page

Following modified from FishBase
   Top | See original

http://www.fishbase.org/Summary/speciesSummary.php?genusname=Monopterus&speciesname=albus ---> http://www.fishbase.org/summary/Monopterus-albus.html

You can sponsor this page

Common name (e.g. trout)

Genus + Species (e.g. Gadus morhua)

Monopterus albus   (Zuiew, 1793)

Asian swamp eel Upload your photos  and  videos
Pictures | Google image Image of Monopterus albus (Asian swamp eel) Monopterus albus
Picture by Vidthayanon, C.

Classification / Names Common names | Synonyms | Catalog of Fishes ( gen. , sp. ) | ITIS | CoL | WoRMS | Cloffa

Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Synbranchiformes (Spiny eels) > Synbranchidae (Swamp-eels)
Etymology: Monopterus: Greek, monos = one, unique + Greek, pteron = fin (Ref. 45335 ) .

Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range Ecology

Freshwater; brackish; demersal; potamodromous (Ref. 51243 ); depth range 3 - ? m (Ref. 2686 ).   Tropical; 25°C - 28°C (Ref. 2060 ); 34°N - 6°S

Distribution Countries | FAO areas | Ecosystems | Occurrences | Point map | Introductions | Faunafri

Asia: India to China, Japan, Malaysia and Indonesia. Probably occurring in Bangladesh.

Size / Weight / Age

Maturity: L m   ?   range ? - ? cm
Max length : 100.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 2686 ); common length : 40.0 cm SL male/unsexed; (Ref. 44894 )

Short description Morphology | Morphometrics

Anguilliform body; no scales; no pectoral and pelvic fins; dorsal, caudal and anal fins confluent and reduced to a skin fold; gill openings merged into single slit underneath the head (Ref. 27732 ). Rice paddy eels are red to brown with a sprinkling of dark flecks across their backs; large mouths and small eyes (Ref. 44091 ).

Biology     Glossary (e.g. epibenthic)

Found in hill streams to lowland wetlands (Ref. 57235 ) often occurring in ephemeral waters (Ref. 44894 ). Adults are found in medium to large rivers, flooded fields and stagnant waters including sluggish flowing canals (Ref. 12975 , 12693 ), in streamlets and estuaries (Ref. 41236 ). Benthic (Ref. 58302 ), burrowing in moist earth in dry season surviving for long periods without water (Ref 2686 ). Occasionally dug out in old taro fields, in Hawaii, long after the field has been drained; more frequently observed in stream clearing operations using heavy equipment to remove large amounts of silt and vegetation where the eels are hidden (Ref. 44091 ). Nocturnal predators devouring fishes, worms, crustaceans, and other small aquatic animals (Ref. 44091 ); also feed on detritus. Are protandrous hermaphrodites. The male guards and builds nest or burrow (Ref. 205 ). Marketed fresh and can be kept alive for long periods of time as long as the skin is kept moist (Ref. 12693 ). Good flesh (Ref. 2686 ). Important fisheries throughout Southeast Asia (Ref. 57235 ).

Life cycle and mating behavior Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae

Male builds a large free-floating bubblenest among the submerged vegetation close to the shoreline; eggs are spat into the nest after being laid; male guards the nest and continues to guard the young after hatching till they are on their own (Ref. 44091 ). Spawning occurs in shallow water (Ref. 2060 ). Sex reversal is completed in 8-30 weeks (Ref. 34260 ).

Main reference Upload your references | References | Coordinator : Fávorito, Sandra | Collaborators

Talwar, P.K. and A.G. Jhingran , 1991. Inland fishes of India and adjacent countries. Volume 2. A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam. (Ref. 4833 )

IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 115185 )

  Least Concern (LC)  

CITES (Ref. 115941 )

Not Evaluated

CMS (Ref. 116361 )

Not Evaluated

Threat to humans


Human uses

Fisheries: commercial; aquaculture: commercial; aquarium: commercial FAO(Aquaculture: production ; fisheries: production ; publication : search ) | FishSource |

More information

FAO areas
Food items
Food consumption
Common names
Egg development
Larval dynamics
Aquaculture profile
Allele frequencies
Mass conversion
Stamps, Coins Misc.
Swim. type
Gill area


Bio-Quiz | E-book | Field guide | Length-frequency wizard | Life-history tool | Point map | Classification Tree | Catch-MSY |

Special reports

Check for Aquarium maintenance | Check for Species Fact Sheets | Check for Aquaculture Fact Sheets

Download XML

Summary page | Point data | Common names | Photos

Internet sources

Alien/Invasive Species database | Aquatic Commons | BHL | Cloffa | BOLDSystems | Websites from users | Check FishWatcher | CISTI | Catalog of Fishes ( gen. , sp. ) | DiscoverLife | ECOTOX | Faunafri | Fishtrace | GenBank( genome , nucleotide ) | GloBI | Google Books | Google Scholar | Google | IGFA World Record | MitoFish | National databases | Otolith Atlas of Taiwan Fishes | PubMed | Reef Life Survey | SeaLifeBase | Tree of Life | Wikipedia( Go , Search ) | World Records Freshwater Fishing | Zoological Record

Estimates of some properties based on models

Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805 ):  PD 50 = 0.5001   [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high]. Bayesian length-weight: a=0.00068 (0.00037 - 0.00123), b=3.08 (2.91 - 3.25), in cm Total Length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245 ). Trophic Level (Ref. 69278 ):  2.9   ±0.28 se; Based on food items. Resilience (Ref. 69278 ):  Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (Fec = 1,000). Prior r = 0.31, 2 SD range = 0.12 - 0.81, log(r) = -1.17, SD log(r) = 0.48, Based on: 1 K, 1 tmax, 1 Fec records Vulnerability (Ref. 59153 ):  High vulnerability (65 of 100) . Price category (Ref. 80766 ):   Unknown .

Entered by Luna, Susan M. Modified by Luna, Susan M. Fish Forum
Comments & Corrections
Sign our Guest Book Back to Search Random Species Back to Top
Accessed through: Not available FishBase mirror site : localhost Page last modified by : mrius-barile - 20 July 2016
Total processing time for the page : 3.7741 seconds

Updated: 2018-11-15 04:18:29 gmt
Discover Life | Top
© Designed by The Polistes Corporation