Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Cephalopholis argus, Argus Grouper, Peacock Hind, Peacock Grouper

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

brown + blue spots
rear body: pale bars
juv: brown + blue spots

Cephalopholis argus Bloch & Schneider, 1801

Peacock Hind, Argus Grouper, Peacock Grouper

Body robust, oblong, body depth < head length; snout much longer than small eye; convex between the eyes; rear of top jaw exposed when mouth closed, with bony knob at lower rear corner; most of teeth movable; gill rakers 9-11 + 17-19; preopercle rounded, finely serrated, no spines or notch; dorsal with IX, 15-17, membranes deeply notched between spines; anal fin III, 9; pectoral fin symmetrically rounded, 16-18, a scaly flap of skin joining upper part of inner side of pectoral base to body; tail base slender, its height < ½ body height; tail fin rounded; flank scales rough; body scales small, with accessory scales; lateral line 46-51 scales, longitudinal scales 95-110.

Head, body and fins dark brown, with numerous small blue, dark-edged spots; rear of body often with ~6 broad pale bars; a large pale area on chest; tips of dorsal fin spines orange

Reaches 60 cm, 3.5 kg, 25 years.

Lives on reefs, in both lagoonal and outer reef habitats.

Depth range 1-80 m, usually shallower than 15m

Indo-central Pacific; introduced to SE Florida.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Mobile benthic worms
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Exotic (Introduced)
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent
  • Continent only
  • Exotic (Introduced)
  • All species
  • Vagrant
Climate Zone
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 60
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 80