Eptatretus menezesi 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Myxini Myxiniformes Myxinidae

Scientific Name: Eptatretus menezesi
Species Authority: Mincarone, 2000

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2009-11-10
Assessor(s): Mincarone, M.M.
Reviewer(s): Polidoro, B., Knapp, L. & Carpenter, K.E.
This species is known from about 30 specimens from Brazil. There are no known threats likely to affect this species, although it is incidentally caught as bycatch in deep-sea fisheries throughout its range. It is listed as Least Concern. However, more research is needed on this species distribution, population, biology, life history, and potential threats.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is located off southeastern and southern Brazil, from Cabo Frio (Rio de Janeiro) to Barra do Chuí (Rio Grande do Sul). It is probable that it also occurs off northern Uruguay (Mincarone 2000, 2003).
Countries occurrence:
Brazil; Uruguay
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Atlantic – southwest
Lower depth limit (metres): 600
Upper depth limit (metres): 250
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The population information is known from 30 type specimens and further scientific sampling. This species was known to be the most abundant of Brazilian hagfishes.
Current Population Trend: Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is found on irregular bottoms of the continental slope, covered with mud, corals, and rock reefs, at depths from 250-600 m. Females larger than 550 mm present dozens of large eggs. A 737 mm female contained 44 encapsulated eggs without anchor filaments, the largest measuring 41x11 mm (Mincarone 2000). Eptatretus menezesi has been incidentally collected by bottom trawlers and trappers. During eight research cruises conducted by the REVIZEE Program (Program for Assessment of the Sustainable Yield of Living Resources of the Exclusive Economic Zone) off southern Brazil, it was the second most abundant species trapped (Vieira et al. 1997). 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).
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no known targeted threats but the species is incidentally caught by bottom trawlers and trappers. There is a limited number of fishing vessels that operate at the depths where species occurs so pressure is apparent across species habitat.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: More research is needed on this species' biology, population size, distribution and impacts of deep-water bottom trawling.

Classifications [top]

11. Marine Deep Benthic -> 11.1. Marine Deep Benthic - Continental Slope/Bathyl Zone (200-4,000m) -> 11.1.1. Hard Substrate
suitability: Marginal  
11. Marine Deep Benthic -> 11.1. Marine Deep Benthic - Continental Slope/Bathyl Zone (200-4,000m) -> 11.1.2. Soft Substrate
suitability: Suitable  

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
5. Biological resource use -> 5.4. Fishing & harvesting aquatic resources -> 5.4.4. Unintentional effects: (large scale)
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.3. Life history & ecology

Bibliography [top]

IUCN. 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2011.1). Available at: (Accessed: 16 June 2011).

Mincarone, M.M. 2000. Eptatretus menezesi, a new species of hagfish (Agnatha, Myxinidae) from Brazil. Bulletin of Marine Science 67(2): 815-819.

Mincarone, M.M. 2003. Família Myxinidae. In: N.A. Menezes, P.A. Buckup, J.L. Figueiredo and R.L. Moura (eds), Catálogo das espécies de peixes marinhos do Brasil., pp. 21. Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo.

Patzner, R.A. 1998. Gonads and reproduction in hagfishes. In: J.M. Jørgensen, J.P. Lomholt, R.E. Weber, and H. Malte (eds), The biology of hagfishes, pp. 378-395. Chapman & Hall, London.

Vieira, R.C., Warlich, R., Bernardes, R.A., Wongtschowski, C.L. and Bailon, M.A. 1997. Prospecção pesqueira em fundos irregulares na Zona Econômica Exclusiva: 2- Tipos de fundos e composição das capturas. In Anais da 10ª Semana Nacional de Oceanografia. Itajaí: 207-209.

Citation: Mincarone, M.M. 2013. Eptatretus menezesi. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T196034A8996140. . Downloaded on 29 November 2015.
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