Eptatretus sinus 

Scope: Global
Language: English

Translate page into:

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Myxini Myxiniformes Myxinidae

Scientific Name: Eptatretus sinus Wisner & McMillan, 1990
Common Name(s):
English Cortez Hagfish
Spanish Bruja de Cortés

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2009-11-12
Assessor(s): Mincarone, M.M.
Reviewer(s): Polidoro, B., Knapp, L. & Carpenter, K.E.
This species is considered abundant in the Gulf of California. There are no known threats to this species. Although shrimp trawling activities are known to extensively occur within the Gulf of California, they operate only to 150 m, which is outside of this species depth range. It is listed as Least Concern. More research is needed on this species population, biology, life history, and potential threats.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is found in the Gulf of California, Mexico, between the islands Ángel de la Guarda and San José. This species is endemic to the Gulf of California.
Countries occurrence:
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Pacific – eastern central
Additional data:
Number of Locations:1
Lower depth limit (metres):1330
Upper depth limit (metres):198
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The population information for this species is known from 424 specimens and is therefore likely to be an abundant species. There is no information on population trends however and the sampling size is too small. No landing records for this species exist.
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This species is known from shallow waters to deep channels in the mid-riff area of the gulf, at depths from 198-1,330 m. Eptatretus sinus matures at a short total length, 130 mm for males and 142 for females, when compared to other congeners. Of the total 424 specimens for which sex was reliably determined, 35% were male and 65% female. Encapsulated anchor filaments are visible on eggs of 20 mm. The largest egg found (among 21 large ones) was 32x7.5 in a female of 371 mm TL (Wisner and McMillan 1990).

The copulatory organ is absent in this species. The gonads of hagfishes are situated in the peritoneal cavity. The ovary is found in the anterior portion of the gonad, and the testis is found in the posterior part. The animal becomes female if the cranial part of the gonad develops or male if the caudal part undergoes differentiation. If none develops, then the animal becomes sterile. If both anterior and posterior parts develop, then the animal becomes a functional hermaphrodite. However, hermaphroditism being characterised as functional needs to be validated by more reproduction studies (Patzner 1998).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no known direct threats to this species. Although extensive shrimp trawling is known to operate in the Gulf of California, trawling activities are generally no deeper than 150 m.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There is a large network of Marine Protected Areas in the Gulf of California but 80% of the coverage falls outside of the species' distribution and depth range. MPAs are predominantly coastal so do not protect the deep water habitat of this species.

Citation: Mincarone, M.M. 2011. Eptatretus sinus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T196043A8997295. . Downloaded on 27 May 2018.
Disclaimer: To make use of this information, please check the <Terms of Use>.
Feedback: If you see any errors or have any questions or suggestions on what is shown on this page, please provide us with feedback so that we can correct or extend the information provided