Fish ID >>Reef/Wreck 

black-grouper

Black Grouper

Mycteroperca bonaci

Description: Olive or gray body coloration with black blotches and brassy spots; gently rounded preopercle.

Similar Fish: Gag, M. microlepis; yellowfin grouper, M. venenosa.

Where Found: Offshore species; adults associated with rocky bottoms, reefs, and dropoff walls in water over 60 feet deep; young may occur inshore in shallow water.

Size: Common to 40 pounds, may attain weights exceeding 100 pounds; no Florida record because of identity confusion with gag, which are mistakenly called “black grouper”.

Remarks: Spawns between May and August; protogynous hermaphrodites, young predominately female, transforming into males as they grow larger; larger individuals generally in greater depths; feeds on fish and squid.

Illustration: © Diane Rome Peebles

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