Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Epinephelus adscensionis, Rock Hind, Rock Hind Grouper

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head & body: red-brown spots
black saddles: back 3 (juv 2), tail base 1
C rounded

Epinephelus adscensionis (Osbeck, 1765)

Rock Hind, Rock Hind Grouper

Body robust, compressed, deepest at origin of dorsal fin, depth < head length; rear of top jaw exposed when mouth closed, without bony knob at lower rear corner; teeth depressible; sides of roof of mouth with teeth; front and rear nostrils ~equal; operculum edge with 3 flat spines; preoperculum serrate, with larger serrate at angle; 23-28 gill rakers; dorsal fin XI, 16-18, spine IV or V longest, longer than longest ray, membranes between spines indented, length of base of soft part not longer than that of spiny part; anal fin III, 8; pectoral fin symmetrically rounded, 18-20; origin of pelvic behind pectoral base, fin shorter than pectoral fin; tail rounded; body scales smooth, ~50 on lateral line.

Adult: head and body yellowish-brown to greenish, covered with red-brown spots and scattered pale blotches; 3-5 dark saddles along top of back; a black blotch on top of tail base; sometimes a dark stripe from snout through and behind eye. Juveniles with fewer and relatively larger dark spots, and more obvious pale spotting, 2 black saddles on upper back, 1 on tail base.

Reaches 62 cm; 4.1 kg; and 33 years.

Lives on reefs.

Depth range: 2-189 m.

E, central and W Atlantic; N Carolina to Brazil.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Rocks
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Submerged vegetation
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • Transatlantic (East+West Atlantic)
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Extends North of GC
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 62
Depth Range Min
  • 2
Depth Range Max
  • 189