Taxon profile


Captain Fine
Epinephelus andersoni Boulenger, 1903

kingdom Animalia - animals »  phylum Chordata - chordates »  class Actinopterygii - ray-finned fishes »  order Perciformes - perch-likes »  family Serranidae - sea basses and groupers »  genus Epinephelus

Other names

= Catface Grouper
= Catface Rockcod

Near Threatened NT


Body elongate, the depth contained 3.2 to 3.7 times in standard length (for fish 10 to 50 cm standard length); greatest body width contained 1.4 to 1.8 times in body depth. Head length contained 2.4 to 2.7 times in standard length; preopercle angular, with several enlarged serrae at the angle; upper edge of operculum slightly convex; nostrils equal in size; maxilla scaly, reaching to or past vertical at rear edge of eye: midside of lower jaw with 2 or 3 rows of teeth. Gill rakers shorter than gill filaments, 8 to 11 on upper limb, 14 to 17 on lower limb, 22 to 27 total. Dorsal fin with XI spines and 13 to 15 rays, the third or fourth spine longest, its length contained 2.9 to 3.9 times in head length, the interspinous membranes moderately incised; anal fin with III spines and 8 rays; pectoral fins with 17 to 19 rays, their length contained 1.5 to 2.0 times in head length; pelvic-fin length contained 2.1 to 2.6 times in head length; caudal fin well rounded. Midlateral-body scales ctenoid (although mostly embedded), with auxiliary scales; lateral-line scales 66 to 74; lateral-scale series 97 to 106.
Colour: Head, body, and fins brown; body, caudal, and dorsal fins with numerous, small, close-set, irregular, dark brown spots; 2 dark brown stripes posteriorly from eye across operculum and another continuing from maxillary groove to lower edge of preopercle. Juveniles with longitudinal dark stripes that break up into spots posteriorly on body; black blotch at base of last few dorsal-fin spines; 2 small black spots at base of dorsal-fin rays, and a third on top of caudal peduncle; these black blotches separated by 4 or 5 white spots.


E. andersoni is known with certainty only from the southeast coast of Africa between Quissico, Mozambique (24º50’S) and Knysna, South Africa (23ºE). Reports from Madagascar (Fourmanoir, 1957) are dubious.


Rocky bottom from shore to depths of at least 50 m; juveniles are found in tidepools. According to van der Elst (1981), E. andersoni is a sedentary ambush predator that feeds on fishes, crabs, and spiny lobsters. Sexual maturity is attained at a length of 50 to 60 cm.


Maximum total length at least 80 cm.


Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 1993, Heemstra, P.C.; Randall, J.E., FAO species catalogue. Vol. 16. Groupers of the world (Family Serranidae, Subfamily Epinephelinae). An annotated and illustrated catalogue of the grouper, rock cod, hind, coral grouper and lyretail species known to date.
Author: Petr Čech

Links and literature

CH DE EN FR IT NL PR SP FishBase [5523]

Froese R., Pauly D. (eds.): FishBase []
CZ AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [species/8441]

Plíštil J. (Ed.) (2009): AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [] [as Epinephelus andersoni Boulenger, 1903]
Data retrieved on: 17 January 2010
EN IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018-1 [44678]

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species [] [as Epinephelus andersoni Boulenger, 1903]
Data retrieved on: 3 August 2018
CZ Hanel L., Plíštil J., Novák J. (2011): České názvy živočichů V. Ryby a rybovití obratlovci (Pisces). 7. Paprskoploutví (Actinopterygii) Kostnatí (Neopterygii) [Ropušnicotvaří (Scorpaeniformes) – ostnoploutví (Perciformes) – Percoidei], Národní muzeum (zoologické oddělení), Praha, 148 str. [as Epinephelus andersoni Boulenger, 1903]
Data retrieved on: 19 August 2019

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