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Conger conger 

Scope: Global
Language: English
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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Anguilliformes Congridae

Scientific Name: Conger conger (Linnaeus, 1758)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Conger Eel, Conger, Congers, Eel, European Conger, Sea Eel
French Anguille de Mer, Congre, Congre D'Europe, Coungre Nègre, Felat, Fiélà, Fielas, Grongu, Mourna-grounch, Orratza
Spanish Congre Safio, Congrio, Côngrio, Congrio Commun, Congrio Común, Culebra, Negrillo, Safio
Synonym(s):
Anguilla conger (Linnaeus, 1758)
Anguilla obtusa Swainson, 1839
Conger communis Costa, 1844
Conger linnei Malm, 1877
Conger niger (Risso, 1810)
Conger rubescens Ranzani, 1839
Conger verus Risso, 1827
Conger vulgaris Yarrell, 1832
Helmictis punctatus Rafinesque, 1810
Lepidopus pellucidus Risso, 1810
Leptocephalus candidissimus Costa, 1832
Leptocephalus conger (Linnaeus, 1758)
Leptocephalus gussoni Cocco, 1829
Leptocephalus inaequalis Facciolà, 1883
Leptocephalus lineatus Bonnaterre, 1788
Leptocephalus morrisianus Lacepède, 1800
Leptocephalus morrisii Gmelin, 1789
Leptocephalus pellucidus (Couch, 1832)
Leptocephalus spallanzani Risso, 1810
Leptocephalus stenops Kaup, 1856
Leptocephalus vitreus Kölliker, 1853
Muraena conger Linnaeus, 1758
Muraena nigra Risso, 1810
Ophidium pellucidum Couch, 1832
Ophisoma obtusa (Swainson, 1839)

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2011-10-20
Assessor(s): Tighe, K.
Reviewer(s): Smith, S. & Polidoro, B.
Justification:
In the eastern Atlantic, Conger conger is present from Norway and Iceland to Senegal also found throughout the Mediterranean Sea. It has a wide depth range of zero to 1,200 m and is common and moderately abundant throughout its range. Given total FAO catch-landings of this species for the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic fishing grounds from 1954-2009 there seems to be a steady increase in numbers; starting in 1954 with 11,000 metric tons, and ending in 2009 with 17,229 metric tons, and a low of 8,400 metric tons in 1966 and a high in 1994 with 19,036 metric tons.  While the catch of this species seems to be stable, this is not necessarily an indicator of population status, more information is needed on fishing effort. Despite this species' vast catch numbers in bycatch trawling and its many uses, it is not considered to be threatened by any anthropogenic or natural causes, however future fisheries monitoring is needed. This species may be present in marine protected areas that occur within its distribution. It is therefore is Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:In the eastern Atlantic Conger conger is present from Norway and Iceland to Senegal also found throughout the Mediterranean Sea. This species inhabits a wide depth range from zero to 1,200 m.
Countries occurrence:
Native:
Albania; Algeria; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Cape Verde; Croatia; Cyprus; Denmark; Egypt; Finland; France; Germany; Gibraltar; Greece; Iceland; Ireland; Israel; Italy; Lebanon; Libya; Malta; Mauritania; Monaco; Montenegro; Morocco; Netherlands; Norway; Portugal; Romania; Senegal; Sierra Leone; Slovenia; Spain; Sweden; Syrian Arab Republic; Tunisia; Turkey; Ukraine; United Kingdom; Western Sahara
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Atlantic – northeast; Atlantic – southeast; Atlantic – eastern central; Mediterranean and Black Sea; Pacific – western central
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):1200
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:This species is common and is considered moderately abundant throughout its range. Given total FAO catch-landings of this species for the Mediterranean and eastern Atlantic fishing grounds from 1954-2009 there seems to be a steady increase in numbers; starting in 1954 with 11,000 metric tons, and ending in 2009 with 17,229 metric tons, with a low of 8,400 metric tons in 1966 and a high in 1994 with 19,036 metric tons. The catch may be increasing however, this is not necessarily indicative of the population trend, and further monitoring is necessary for further assessment of this species.
Current Population Trend:Increasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This is a demersal species with a wide bathymetric range (Smith 1990, Mytilineou et al. 2005) with juveniles occupying near the coast and moving towards deeper waters upon reaching adulthood (Maigret and Ly 1986). It is found on rocky and sandy bottoms and is a nocturnal predator (Göthel 1992), on fishes, crustaceans and cephalopods (Bauchot and Saldanha 1986). Like other species of this taxonomic group, it reproduces only once in its life (Maigret and Ly 1986). Individuals are sexually mature at an age from five to 15 years. They spawn during summer in the Atlantic off Portugal and in the Mediterranean Sea. Females produces between three to eight million eggs (Muus and Nielsen 1999). Eggs are deposited in the open sea, at depths between 2,000-3,000 m (Göthel 1992).
Systems:Marine
Movement patterns:Full Migrant

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is commercially fished, but it is not a target species. It is sold fresh and frozen, and is eaten fried and baked (Frimodt 1995). This species can also be used in public aquariums. It is also used for bait to catch shrimp.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Despite this species' vast catch numbers in bycatch trawling and its many uses, it is not considered to be threatened by any anthropogenic or natural causes at this time. Further monitoring may show harvest levels to be threatened in the future.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No specific conservation measures are in place for this species. This species may be present in marine protected areas that occur within its distribution.

Citation: Tighe, K. 2015. Conger conger. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T194969A2369649. . Downloaded on 21 September 2017.
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