Thomas the green moray eel is ready for his close-up.

The green moray eels are normally solitary creatures. You can spot them perched in the coral structure of the Giant Ocean Tank,  flapping their jaws as they gulp air across their gills. Divers offer them food every day. Sometimes they eat, sometimes they don’t. And sometimes they decide they want to eat at 3:30 p.m. when larger fish are eating, and that’s OK. The divers let them help themselves to the food bucket.

So when diver Chris had the underwater camera in the 200,000-gallon tank and he spotted Thomas on the move, he carefully swam along for a close-up. It turned out to be an extreme close-up.

Extreme Close-Up with Thomas the Green Moray

Some fun facts about green morays:

  • They have pharyngeal jaws to help them eat their food. This means there’s a line of sharp teeth lining their mouth, which helps them grip their prey. Then there’s a second set of jaws down the throat that comes forward to grip the prey and pull the food back down the throat. 
  • The skin of a green moray is actually a brown color. It’s a layer of yellowish slime covering their whole bodies that gives them that vibrant green hue.
  • There are two green morays in the Giant Ocean Tank—Thomas and Marilyn, named for a spot on her face.
  • You can watch the divers offer the eels food every morning at 10 a.m.

Come see Thomas and Marilyn in their element in the Giant Ocean Tank! And don’t forget to check out the yellowtail and chain morays at the top of the tank in the Yawkey Coral Reef Center. With our blogs and close-up viewing windows, you can get up close to these remarkable animals—without getting wet. Winter is a wonderful time to plan a visit to the Aquarium.

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