Taxon profile


Epinephelus indistinctus Randall & Heemstra, 1991

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

Data Deficient DD


Body depth contained 3.2 times in standard length (1 specimen, 672 mm standard length). Head length contained 2.3 times in standard length; interorbital area convex, the dorsal head profile slightly convex; preopercle angular, with a shallow indentation just above the rounded angle, the serrae not noticeably enlarged at the angle; upper edge of operculum almost straight; nostrils subequal; maxilla probably reaches vertical at rear edge of eye (holotype preserved with mouth wide open); midlateral part of lower jaw with 2 rows of subequal small teeth; small canines at front of jaws. Gill rakers 9 on upper limb, 14 on lower limb, the longest raker about 2/3 length of longest gill filament; small bony platelets on gill arches. Dorsal fin with XI spines and 14 rays, the fourth spine longest, its length contained 4.2 times in head length and shorter than longest dorsal-fin rays, the interspinous membranes distinctly incised; anal fin with III spines and 8 rays; pectoral-fin rays 18; pectoral-fin length contained 2.4 times in head length; pelvic-fin length contained 2.7 times in head length; caudal-fin rear margin slightly convex. Lateral-body scales smooth (except for area covered by pectoral fins), with numerous auxiliary scales; lateral-line scales 64; lateral scales series 114. Pyloric caeca more than 50.
Colour in alcohol: Head, body, and median fins dark greyish brown, the exposed part of dorsolateral-body scales darker, thus giving a faint finely dotted pattern; 4 faint pale blotches on body at base of dorsal fin, the first at origin of fin and extending anterior to it, the last at base of last 3 or 4 rays and extending onto top of front half of peduncle.


Known only from Indian Ocean off Somalia.


The holotype was caught with a trawl at a depth of 70 to 80 m.


Attains at least 67 cm standard length (80 cm total length).

Interchangeable taxa

E. indistinctus is known only from the holotype collected of Somalia. It has the same shape, fin-ray and scale counts, and nondescript colour pattern (on large adults) as E. bruneus of the western Pacific, but E. bruneus has longer teeth, 16 to 18 lower gill rakers, no auxiliary scales on body, and enlarged serrae at preopercle angle.


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 [7349]

Froese R., Pauly D. (eds.): FishBase []
CZ AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [species/8480]

Plíštil J. (Ed.) (2009): AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [] [as Epinephelus indistinctus Randall & Heemstra, 1991]
Data retrieved on: 17 January 2010
EN IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018-1 [64402]

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species [] [as Epinephelus indistinctus Randall & Heemstra, 1991]
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 indistinctus Randall & Heemstra, 1991]
Data retrieved on: 19 August 2019

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