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TaxonomyMacrognathus pavo is a member of the spiny eels family Mastacembelidae
As their name suggests spiny eels have
- elongate, eel-like body
- long dorsal fins along their backs
- 4 - 42 strong sharp spines on dorsal fins
- when caught, these fishes can wriggle backwards driving the spines into their attacker.
- long snouts or trunks
- highly sensitive
- used to probe around for insects and worms
Macrognathus pavo belongs to a group of eleven closely related species, the Macrognathus aculeatus group.Macrognathus pavo differs from the other members of the group in
- its colour pattern
- smaller number of rostral tooth plates on the underside of the trunk.
- these tooth plates probably help the fish to grab their prey
- Species name
- Comes from the Latin word “pavo”, peafowl, referring to the numerous black spots found on the species.