Monopterus roseni

Bailey and Gans 1998







Holotype and only known specimen: UMMZ 228131, 176mm TL.


Known only from the type locality: a well at Periyam village, northern Kerala State, India (altitude 50m) (10o38’N, 76o22’E). This sits is approximately 100 km north of the type (and only known) locality for Monopterus eapeni.


The well is in a flat area surrounded by paddy fields. No details of the real habitat are known as only one specimen was taken from the well. It is likely that the fish inhabits small conduits in a laterite aquifer.


Despite the rather short distance between the localities for the two subterranean Monopterus species they appear to be quite different (Bailey and Gans 1998) although it must be noted that both species are known only from single individuals. Until further specimens are available it will not be possible to make sensible statements about their relationships. Britz et al. (2016) state that external similarity to West African Monopterus species suggests that M. roseni might be a member of the ‘Amphipnous group’ within Monopterus.

Conservation Status


(Raghavan, R. and Ali, A. 2011. Monopterus roseni. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: Downloaded on 06 July 2017).

Museum Holdings

As above only.

Key References

Rosen, D. E. and Greenwood, P. H. Journal Article 1976 A fourth neotropical species of synbranchid eel and the phylogeny and systematics of synbranchiform fishes
Bailey, R. M. and Gans, C. Journal Article 1998 Two new synbranchid fishes, Monopterus roseni from penisular India and M. desilvai from Sri Lanka
Gopi, KC Journal Article 2002 A new synbranchid fish, Monopterus digressus from Kerala, peninsular India
Kurup B.M. Radhakrishnan K.V. and Manojkumar T.G. Conference Paper 2004 Biodiversity status of fishes inhabiting rivers of Kerala (S. India) with special reference to endemism, threats and conservation measures
Dahanukar, N, Raut, R and Bhat, A Journal Article 2004 Distribution, endemism and threat status of freshwater fishes of the Western Ghats of India
Gopi, KC Book 2006 Fish Fauna of Kozhikode District, Keraia, South India
Ollier, CD and Sheth, HC Journal Article 2008 The High Deccan duricrusts of India and their significance for the ‘laterite’ issue
Pati, AK and Parganiha, A Book Section 2010 Subterranean fishes of India
Vincent, M and Thomas, J Journal Article 2011 Observations on the foraging behaviour of a subterranean fish Monopterus digressus (Synbranchiformes: Synbranchidae)
Dahanukar, N, Raghavan, R, Ali, A, Abraham, R and Shaji, CP Book Section 2011 Chapter 3. The status and distribution of freshwater fishes of the Western Ghats
Vincent, M Journal Article 2012 Occurence, distribution and troglomorphisms of subterranean fishes of penninsular India
Raghavan, R., Das, K, Nameer, PO, Bijukumar, A and Dahanukar, N Journal Article 2016 Protected area and imperriled endemic freshwater biodiversity in the Westren Ghats hotspot
Britz, R., Doherty-Bone, T.M., Kouete, M.T., Sykes, D. and Gower, D.J. Journal Article 2016 Monopterus luticolus, a new species of swamp eel from Cameroon (Teleostei: Synbranchidae)
De Grave, S., Arjun, C.P. and Raghavan, R. Journal Article 2018 The discovery of Euryrhynchidae (Crustacea: Decapoda) in India, with the description of a new genus and species