Taxon profile


Dungat Grouper
Epinephelus goreensis (Valenciennes, 1830)

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 goreensis Valenciennes, 1830

Data Deficient DD


Body depth less than head length, depth contained 2.9 to 3.2 times in standard length (for fish 22 to 50 cm standard length). Head length contained 2.5 to 2.7 times in standard length; interorbital area flat or slightly convex; preopercle angular, with 3 or 4 enlarged serrae at the angle, the lowermost directed ventrally; interopercle and subopercle serrate; middle and lower opercular spines well developed, the upper spine not apparent; upper edge of operculum approximately straight; maxilla reaches vertical at rear edge of eye; no step on ventral edge of maxilla; maxilla naked or with a few minute scales dorsally; midlateral part of lower jaw with 2 rows of teeth; rear nostrils about twice the size of anterior nostrils. Gill rakers 8 or 9 on upper limb, 16 or 17 on lower limb, total 24 to 26; longest gill raker longer than longest gill filaments. Dorsal fin with XI spines and 16 rays, the third or fourth spine longest but shorter than longest ray, the fin membrane incised between the spines; anal fin with III spines and 8 rays; pectoral-fin rays 17 to 19, pectoral-fin length contained 1.8 to 2.1 times in head length; pelvic fins shorter than or equal to pectoral fins: caudal fin slightly concave, truncate or slightly convex. Lateral-body scales ctenoid; no auxiliary scales; lateral-line scales 68 to 74; lateral-scale series 120 to 129. Pyloric caeca 13, long and slender.
Colour: Head and body brownish; 3 or 4 broad, oblique, dark bars on dorsal part of body and another on dorsal half of peduncle; 2 narrow, faint dark bands extending posteriorly from lower half of eye: dark moustache streak present, but not extending past rear end of maxilla.


E. goreensis is known from the tropical coast of west Africa from Senegal to southern Angola. The species has also been reported from the Canary and Cape Verde Islands, but Alberto Brito informed Heemstra and Randall (1993) that E. goreensis has never been caught in the Canary Islands.


Poll (1954) reported this species from a variety of habitats (rock, mud and sand) at depths of 80 to 100 m. No information has been published on the biology of E. goreensis.


Maximum size unknown; attains at least 55 cm total length.

Interchangeable taxa

The dark markings that help to identify juveniles are probably not visible on large adults. E. goreensis is most similar to E. costae. Juveniles of E. costae have 3 to 5 narrow dark stripes paralleling the lateral line (no dark stripes in E. goreensis), and adults often have a large golden yellow blotch on body below the spinous dorsal fin. E. goreensis is readily separated from E. caninus, which has only 13 or 14 dorsal-fin rays and usually a larger head (length contained 2.3 to 2.5 times in standard length). E. goreensis differs from E. marginatus in having a smaller head (length contained 2.5 to 2.7 versus 2.3 to 2.5 times in standard length), more lower-limb gill rakers (16 or 17 versus 14 to 16), and a ventrally directed spine at the angle of the preopercle.


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 [4961]

Froese R., Pauly D. (eds.): FishBase []
CZ AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [species/8471]

Plíštil J. (Ed.) (2009): AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [] [as Epinephelus goreensis (Valenciennes, 1830)]
Data retrieved on: 17 January 2010
EN IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018-1 [132765]

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species [] [as Epinephelus goreensis (Valenciennes, 1830)]
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 goreensis (Valenciennes, 1830)]
Data retrieved on: 19 August 2019

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