Taxon profile


Dusky Rock Cod
Epinephelus bontoides (Bleeker, 1855)

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

Scientific synonyms

Serranus bontoides Bleeker, 1855

Data Deficient DD


Body depth contained 2.8 to 3.2 times in standard length (for fish 8 to 23 cm standard length). Head length contained 2.3 to 2.6 times in standard length; interorbital area flat to slightly convex, the dorsal head profile almost straight; preopercle rounded, finely serrate, the ventral serrae slightly enlarged; upper edge of operculum straight; maxilla reaches past rear edge of eye; midlateral part of lower jaw with 2 or 3 rows of teeth. Gill rakers 6 to 8 on upper limb, 13 to 15 on lower limb, 21 total. Dorsal fin with XI spines 16 or 17 rays, the 3rd to 11th spines subequal and shorter than longest rays, the interspinous membranes incised; anal fin with III spines and 8 rays; pectoral-fin rays 18 to 20; pectoral-fin length contained 1.6 to 2.0 times in head length; pelvic-fin length contained 1.9 to 2.3 times in head length: caudal fin rounded. Midlateral-body scales ctenoid; adults with auxiliary scales; lateral-line scales 48 to 51; lateral-scale series 82 to 86. Pyloric caeca about 18 (1 specimen).
Colour: Head and body greyish brown, covered (except ventrally) with well-separated, dark reddish brown to black spots, smaller than pupil and many horizontally elongate; fins darker than body, the median fins with small dark spots; pectoral, soft dorsal, caudal, and sometimes anal fin dark with a narrow pale yellow or white margin; spinous dorsal fin with 3 rows of oblique black spots.


Western Pacific: Indonesia, Philippines, Taiwan, and New Britain.


Mud or rocky/cobble bottoms in depths of 2 to 30 m. Nothing has been published on the biology of this rare species.


Attains at least 30 cm total length.

Interesting facts

E. bontoides appears to be one of the rarest groupers in the Indo-Pacific region.


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 [6460]

Froese R., Pauly D. (eds.): FishBase []
CZ AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [species/8446]

Plíštil J. (Ed.) (2009): AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [] [as Epinephelus bontoides (Bleeker, 1855)]
Data retrieved on: 17 January 2010
EN IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018-1 [132813]

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species [] [as Epinephelus bontoides (Bleeker, 1855)]
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 bontoides (Bleeker, 1855)]
Data retrieved on: 19 August 2019

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