Immediate First Aid Advice:

Moray Eel
(Muraenidae spp.) Bites:

Stop any bleeding with pressure, clean wounds thoroughly. Get medical help for severe wounds (guard against infection).




There are 80 plus species of moray eel - in Hawaiian "Puhi" - of the family Muraenidae. They differ from other eels in having small rounded gill openings and in generally lacking pectoral fins. Their skin is thick, smooth, and scaleless, Their mouth is wide, their jaws are equipped with strong, razor sharp teeth, which enable them to seize and hold onto their food (fishes, crustaceans and other small marine animals) and also to inflict serious wounds on their enemies, including humans.

They will attack humans - but only when disturbed or provoked and they can be quite vicious. (Although, they actually can be quite friendly once they are used to you - and you are used to them. Careful when you feed them as their teeth are indeed razor sharp and they might lurch at offered food, and offering fingers, very rapidly.)

[MORAY EEL] Moray eels are usually brightly marked or colored. They usually do not exceed a length of about 5 feet (1.5 meters), but one species, Thyrsoidea macrurus of the Pacific, grows to about 11.5 feet (3.5 meters) long. Morays are eaten sometimes, but their flesh is often toxic and may cause sickness or death.

[REEF EEL]Morays enjoy rocky areas, can be found living or just "hanging out" in holes, under rocks, crevices and tidepool ledges. To prevent contact and possible severe injury keep hands out of those rocky areas, holes and crevices. If you must, use a stick to probe. If you are fishing be careful, as dead fish, blood or bait will bring them out of their holes.

They injure you with their razor sharp teeth and powerful jaws that allegedly can lock. Injuries can result in bleeding, severe muscle damage - also chipped bones. Stop any bleeding with pressure, clean wounds thoroughly. Get medical help for severe wounds (be sure to guard against infection).