Wolf Eel

Wolf Eel, Vancouver Island, BC
Wolf Eel, Vancouver Island, BC, Photo By Bud Logan

The Wolf Eel is one of the most interesting species found in the pacific northwest waters. Wolf eels are easy to identify, when young, their coloration is a burnt orange-spotted look that gradually changes into a dominant gray for males and brown for females.

Wolf eels can be found from the Aleutian Islands all the way to Southern California. They live from barely subtidal waters to 100 m. The copper bluffs on Quadra Island is one of the best sites in the pacific northwest in which the wolf eel can be found.

Their jaw is powerful enough to crush shellfish and crabs, the foods that the wolf eel feeds upon are crustaceans, clams, mussels, crabs, snails, and some fishes.

Males and females form pairs at about 4 years of age but don’t reach maturity and produce eggs until 7 or 8 years of age. Spawning takes place from October into late winter. Wolf eel’s mate for life.

The female will lay up to 10 000 eggs at a time with the male fertilizing them. They then wrap themselves around the eggs and guard the eggs for about 13 to 16 weeks until they hatch.

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