Pholis laeta

Crescent gunnel
Pholis laeta
Pholis laeta, British Columbia, Canada, Photo: Valesca de Groot
Pholis laeta
Pholis laeta, British Columbia, Canada, Photo: Em Lim
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Pholis laeta
Pholis laeta



Can be found intertidally down to 73m depths, and often entwined in seaweeds. Body up to 25cm in length, elongate and eel-like. Distinguished from other gunnel species by two dorsal rows of crescent-shaped markings beneath a low dorsal fin. Body colouration ranges from orange-brown to olive green, with colour phases varying to match surroundings. Males and females can be found coiled around the egg ball after spawning. 


Max Size: 25 cm

Sea Temperature Range: -1-16.7°C

Depth: N/A

Habitat Generalization Index: N/A

Also referred to as the SGI (Species Generalisation Index), this describes the habitat niche breadth of the species. Species with values less than 15 are found in a relatively narrow range of reef habitat types (specialists), while those over 25 may be found on most hard substrates within their range (generalists). Learn more here.

Conservation and Rarity

IUCN Status: Not Evaluated

Occurrence: Common (32.1% of sites)

Occurrence describes how often the species is found on surveys within its distribution. It is calculated as the % of reef sites surveyed by RLS divers across all the ecoregions in which the species has been observed

Abundance: Solitary (1 per transect)

Abundance is calculated as the average number of individuals recorded per RLS transect, where present.