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Species: Mycteroperca bonaci, Black grouper

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

grey + red-brown spots, dark quadrangular blotches in pale mesh
pectoral margin pale/yellow
C wide black margin, white edge
D & A ends round
gill rakers 19-27, lower 9-16
rear nostril ~ front nostril
preopercle rounded

Mycteroperca bonaci (Poey, 1860)

Black grouper

Body elongate, robust, compressed, depth at dorsal origin not greater than at anal origin; snout much longer than eye; front and rear nostrils ~equal; lower jaw projecting; rear of top jaw exposed when mouth closed, without accessory bone above it; teeth depressible; canines at front of jaws; preopercle serrated, evenly rounded without a corner lobe; gill rakers, including rudiments, 19-27, lower rakers 9-16; dorsal fin with XI spines, indented between spines, 15-17 rays, rear edge rounded; anal fin with III spines, 10-12 rays, rear edge rounded in adult; adult; tail fin bluntly straight; 78-83 scales on lateral line.

Adult: Head and body grayish to dark brown, with close-set brassy spots separated by a bluish-white network, some of those spots in horizontal rows; upper body sometimes with 7-8 columns of rectangular dark blotches; pectoral fins dark, with pale margins; soft dorsal and anal fins with dark outer edges, tail fin with dark rear edge, with a thin white outer edge. Juvenile: with a small black saddle on top of tail base.

Reaches 150 cm, at least 163 kg.

Adults on reefs; juveniles in mangroves.

Depth range: 1-250 m, adults at deep end of depth range.

Bermuda to Brazil.

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  • Brackish
  • Marine
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Corals
  • Mangrove
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Estuary
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Rocks
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Data
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • West Atlantic Endemic
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • All species.
Regional Endemism
  • Extends North of GC
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Extends South of GC
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • All species..
  • GC non-endemic
  • Continent
  • Island (s)
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Near threatened
  • Not listed
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 250
Length Max
  • 150