What Do Snowflake Eels Eat?

By Naomi Millburn

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Snowflake moray eels (Echidna nebulosa) are a species of robust marine fish that frequently reside in community tanks. For the most part, these eels are considered to be tame in overall behavior, although it's not out of the question for them to feed on tinier fishes, especially if they're on the bigger side. Diet-wise, snowflake moray eels are purely carnivorous.

About Snowflake Moray Eels

Snowflake moray eels have vast geographic reaches, and exist not only in the waters surrounding Central America, but also in those by the eastern region of Africa close to the Middle East. Their physiques, which usually grow to roughly 30 inches long, are either yellowish-white or white, and feature prominent dark blots. They have yellow eyes. Out in nature, snowflake moray eels tend to occupy reef flats, and are often drawn to rugged locales. They are frequently referred to by many other names, which include clouded moray eel, nebulous moray eel, diamondback eel, floral moray eel and starry moray eel.

Captive Diet

As pets in captivity, snowflake moray eels are often given diverse menus of meaty stuff -- think relatively big bits of diced crabs, mussels, scallops, clams, shrimp and krill. Bits of marine fish flesh are also often fed to snowflake moray eels. Both thawed frozen and fresh meats are suitable for the species. Always employ tongs for feeding purposes -- not your hands.

Feeding Frequency

Snowflake moray eels require meals a few times each week. The nocturnal fish occasionally hide away for weeks at a time, not even coming out for feeding sessions, however. Ample hiding spots, such as sturdy rocks and caves, are a must for snowflake moray eels.

Wild Diet

Members of the species living in the wild focus heavily on crustaceans when seeking out food, and even more specifically on crabs. Tiny fish are also a food staple for snowflake moray eels. In situations of excessively big prey, these eels envelope their targets' bodies as a means of easily ripping off more manageable chunks of meat. Bigger snowflake moray eels in natural habitats also consume higher amounts of fish in comparison to small or mid-sized individuals.

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