62 photos 29 species


Introduction


There are over 160 species in this family.

They are greedy hunters that prey on small fish.

But they are also victims of fishing, especially for the Chinese markets in East Asia.

For example, there are far fewer large perch to be seen on the Maldivian reefs.

Most species grow to between 20 and 80 cm in length, with the giant grouper reaching a length of over 2 m.


Aethaloperca rogaa

Redmouth grouper or Red-flushed rock cod

Maximum length: 60 cm

Depth: 1 - 55 m

Dark brown, high-backed body.

Inhabits coral-rich bays and reef slopes, but is also frequently seen on wrecks.

Always close to hiding places and close to the bottom.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt


Anyperodon leucogrammicus

Slender grouper

Maximum length: 40 cm

Depth: 4 - 55 m

Sometimes changes color to highlight the spots or stripes.

Photo 1 Johnny: Embudu Maldives


Cephalopholis argus

Peacock hind, Bluespotted grouper or Celestial grouper

Maximum length: 55 cm

Depth: 1 - 50 m

Sometimes with bright bands (see photo above)

Often seeking cover under overhangs and reef slopes

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt


Cephalopholis cruentata

Graysby

Maximum length: 30 cm

Depth: 3 - 20 m

3 to 5 pale to dark spots along the base of the dorsal fin, round caudal fin.

Reddish-brown with red to brown spots scattered all over the body.

Somewhat shy of divers.

Photos 1 - 3 Johnny: Bonaire Caribbean


Cephalopholis fulva

Coney or Butterfish

Two-tone colour form
Two-tone colour form
Juvenile
Juvenile

Maximum length: 40 cm

Depth: 3 - 20 m

Various color forms.

Prefers reefs, swims close to the bottom or rests on it.

Somewhat shy, but often curious.

Photos 1 - 5 Astrid: Bonaire Caribbean

Photos 6 - 7 Johnny: Bonaire Caribbean


Cephalopholis miniata

Coral grouper, Coral hind, Coral rock cod, Coral cod, Coral trout,

Round-tailed trout or Vermillion seabass

Maximum length: 40 cm

Depth: 1 - 150 m

Not very shy.

Popular photo subject.

Photo 1 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt

Photos 2 - 3 Johnny: Embudu Maldives


Cephalopholis sexmaculata

Sixblotch hind, Freckled cod, Freckled rock-cod, Sixband cod,

Six-banded rockcod, Sixband rockcod or Sixspot rockcod

Maximum length: 50 cm

Depth: 6 - 150 m

Body with dark bands and small blue dots.

It is very rarely found in open water, rather upside down on cave ceilings.

Very shy, immediately retreats deep into its hiding place when approached.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt


Cromileptes altivelis

Humpback grouper, Panther grouper or Barramundi cod

Maximum length: 65 cm

Depth: 1 - 40

Also called paddlefish and Grace-Kelly perch.

At first this species is female, but then changes its sex to male.

Found on coral-rich coastal and outer reef crests.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Lembeh Strait North Sulawesi


Epinephelus adscensionis

Rock hind

Maximum length: 60 cm

Depth: 1 - 35 m

Reddish to dark spots on all fins and the body.

It can fade drastically to white, but can also become darker.

Inhabits rocky, shallow as well as deep reefs.

Shy in shallow waters, where it often hides in dark niches,

but in deeper reef zones it allows divers to get close to it.

Photo 1 Astrid: Bonaire Caribbean

Photo 2 Johnny: Bonaire Caribbean


Epinephelus fasciatus

Blacktip grouper, Redbanded grouper, Blacktipped cod,

Black-tipped rockcod, Footballer cod, Red-barred cod,

Red-barred rockcod, Scarlet rock-cod or Weathered rock-cod

Maximum length: 40 cm

Depth: 0.5 - 160 m

Black tips on the dorsal fin and *mask cap *

Not very shy.

Photo 1 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt

Photo 2 Astrid: Hurghada Egypt


Epinephelus faveatus

Barrel-chested grouper or Indian grouper

Maximum length: 32 cm

Depth: 1 - 125 m

A whitish to pale gray grouper with numerous densely placed round spots of different sizes on the head, body and fins.

Photo 1 Johnny: Bangka Island North Sulawesi


Epinephelus fuscoguttatus

Brown-marbled grouper or Tiger grouper

Maximum length: 90 cm

Depth: 1 - 60 m

Cautious and shy loner.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Embudu Maldives


Epinephelus guttatus

Red hind, Koon or Lucky grouper

Maximum length: 60 cm

Depth: 3 - 50 m

Black, white border on the tail - anus - and the rear part of the dorsal fin.

Body: Red spots on a white-yellowish background.

Photo 1 Astrid: Bonaire Caribbean

Photo 2 Johnny: Bonaire Caribbean


Epinephelus lanceolatus

Giant grouper, Queensland groper ( grouper ), Brindle grouper or Mottled-brown sea bass

Maximum length: 3 m

Depth: 5 - 100 m

A widespread but rare giant species of at least 300 kg.

This species has often been described as dangerous to humans, but so far there have been no confirmed, unprovoked attacks.

Injuries always result from feeding the giants by hand.

In contrast, this rare species is threatened by fishing and harpooning in many areas.

Photos 1 - 3 Johnny: Oberhausen Germany ( Aquarium )


Epinephelus malabaricus

Malabar grouper, Blackspot rockcod, Estuary rockcod, Giant rock cod, Greasy grouper, Malabar rockcod, Morgan's cod or Speckled grouper

Maximum length: 1.20 m

Depth: 2 - 100 m

Brightly spotted body with small, black dots.

Lives in sheltered reefs and deltas, where it often lurks on sand or rubble.

Shy loner that feeds on lobsters, squid and fish.

Rarely seen in the Red Sea.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt


Epinephelus merra

Honeycomb grouper, Black-spotted rock-cod,

Common birdwire rockcod, Dwarf spotted rockcod, Dwarf-spotted grouper, Honeycomb cod, Wire-netted reefcod or Wire-netting cod

Maximum length: 31 cm

Depth: 1 - 50 m

Found in shallow lagoons and seaward reefs.

They eat fish and crustaceans.

Photo 1 Johnny: Bangka Island North Sulawesi


Epinephelus ongus

White-streaked grouper, Specklefin grouper, Lace-finned rock-cod, Specklefin rockcod, Wavy-lined tock-cod, White-speckled grouper or White-spotted rock-cod

Juvenile
Juvenile

Maximum adult length: 35 cm

Depth: 5 - 25 m

Juveniles ( about 10 cm ) are dark brown with numerous small pale yellow to white spots.

Adults are brown, with a few large light spots and many small ones.

Prefers shallow, sheltered coastal reefs and lagoons.

Shy.

Photo 1 Johnny: Lembeh Strait North Sulawesi


Epinephelus polyphekadion

Camouflage grouper, Blue-tailed cod, Camouflage rockcod,

Small-toothed rockcod, Smooth flowery rock-cod,

Snout-spot grouper or Snout-spot rock-cod

Maximum length: 75 cm

Depth: 1 - 45 m

Black spot on the root of the tail.

During the mating season, the fish will ram its head.

Photo 1 Johnny: Embudu Maldives


Epinephelus spilotoceps

Foursaddle grouper or Spotty cod

Maximum length: 25 cm

Depth: 10 - 70 m

Very often found in the Maldives.

Photo 1 Johnny: Embudu Maldives


Epinephelus stoliczkae

Epaulet grouper

Maximum length: 38 cm

Depth: 1 - 25 m

It has dark bands on the hind body.

Inhabits sandy areas of shallow rocky reefs.

Photo 1 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt.


Epinephelus summana

Summan grouper

Maximum length: 52 cm

Depth: 1 - 30 m

White spots on a dark brown background.

Not shy.

Photos 1 - 3 Astrid: Hurghada Egypt


Epinephelus tauvina ( Rostflecken - Zackenbarsch )

Greasy grouper, Arabian grouper or Greasy rockcod

Maximum length: 70 cm

Depth: 1 - 45 m

Not very shy.

Lies in wait on the sand for prey.

Photo 1 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt

Photo 2 Johnny: El Quesir Egypt


Mycteroperca interstitialis

Yellowmouth grouper, Crossband rockfish, Grey mannock, Hamlet, Harlequin rockfish, Princess rockfish, Rockfish, Salmon grouper, Salmon rock fish or Scamp

Juvenile
Juvenile

Maximum length: 75 cm

Depth: 3 - 25 m

Mouth corners clearly yellow.

Pectoral fin base and edge pale.

Can have a uniform coloration as well as patterns on the body.

Juvenile form is bicolored.

Shy, sometimes curious.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Bonaire Caribbean


Mycteroperca tigris

Tiger grouper

Juvenile
Juvenile
Juvenile
Juvenile
Initiative phase
Initiative phase
Adult
Adult

Maximum length: 100 cm

Depth: 3 - 20 m

Body with nine brown to black transverse "tiger stripes" on a light background.

The coloration can change drastically to pale or dark, especially at cleaning stations they often become bright red.

Juvenile form: With sexual maturity, the dark bands appear and gradually become more distinct.

Juvenile form: Yellow body.

Photos 1 - 5 Johnny: Bonaire Caribbean

Photo 6 Astrid: Bonaire Caribbean


Mycteroperca venenosa

Yellowfin grouper

Maximum length: 100 cm

Depth: 2 - 130 m

This grouper is on the red list of endangered species as of 2024, despite this status it is intensively pursued by commercial and sport fishing.

Found over rocky bottoms and coral reefs.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Bonaire Caribbean


Plectropomus areolatus

Squaretail coral grouper

Maximum length: 73 cm

Depth: 1 - 50 m

Blue dots with a black border.

Travels alone and is very shy.

It hunts small fish.

Photo 1 Astrid: Hurghada Egypt


Plectropomus laevis

Black-saddled coral grouper, Cluespotted coral trout, Tiger trout,

Blacksaddled coral trout, Blue-spot trout, Chinese footballer, Fooballer cod, Footballer coral trout or Oceanic coral trout

Maximum length: 90 cm

Depth: 10 - 150 m+

A wide-ranging species with light and dark color phases.

Solitary and very shy.

Photo 1 Johnny: Embudu Maldives


Plectropomus marisrubri

Red sea leopard grouper

Maximum length: 1.1 m

Depth: 3 - 50 m

Variable coloration: red to brown with blue spots and stripes.

When they are excited they show light-colored saddles.

They are found on outer reef slopes, lagoons, seagrass beds and in wrecks.

Prey: Fish and pipe eels.

Photos 1 - 2 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt


Variola louti

Yellow-edged lyretail, Yellowedge coronation trout, Fairy cod,

Lunar tail rock cod, Lunartailed cod, Lyre-tail cod or Moontail seabass

Juvenile
Juvenile
Adult
Adult

Maximum length: 80 cm

Depth: 1 - 150 m

Sickle tail with yellow edge.

Inhabits lagoons, outer reefs and channels.

Photo 1 Johnny: Hurghada Egypt

Photo 2 Astrid: Hurghada Egypt