Freshwater Eel

Freshwater Eel (Anguilla marmorata)

Photo: Mike N. Yamamoto


  • Long cylindrical scaleless bodies with small pectoral fins (Schofield & Fuller, 2021)
  • Lower jaw protrudes beyond upper jaw (Schofield & Fuller, 2021)
  • Marbled coloration of black and brown hues (USFWS, 2018)


  • Live in estuaries and seas when young and move to freshwater as adults (USFWS, 2018)

Impacts & Concern:

  • No studies available in Hawai‘i to determine potential impacts of introduction (Schofield & Fuller, 2021)


  • Unknown means of introduction, possibly either an aquarium release or a food-fish escape (Schofield & Fuller, 2021)  
  • Failed to establish on Maui in 2002 (Schofield & Fuller, 2021)

Distribution in Hawaii:

  • Kauai: Not documented
  • O‘ahu: Not documented
  • Molokai: Not documented
  • Lanai: Not documented
  • Maui: Observed but not established
  • Big Island: Not documented


  • Schofield, P.J., & Fuller, P. (2021) Anguilla marmorata Quoy and Gaimard, 1824: U.S. Geological Survey, Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Database, Gainesville, FL.
  • USFWS. (2018). Anguilla marmorata Ecological Risk Screening Summary. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.