Taxon profile


Red-flushed Cod
Aethaloperca rogaa (Forsskål, 1775)

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

Scientific synonyms

Perca rogaa Forsskål, 1775
Cephalopholis rogaa (Forsskål, 1775)
Athaloperca rogae (Forsskål, 1775)
Aetholoperca rogaa (Forsskål, 1775)
Aetheloperca rogaa (Forsskål, 1775)
Perca lunaria Forsskål, 1775
Aethaloperca rogga (Forsskål, 1775)
Aethaloperca rogoa (Forsskål, 1775)

Other names

= Red-flushed Rock-cod
= Redmouth Groper
= Redmouth Grouper

Data Deficient DD



Body deep and compressed, the depth greater than the head length and contained 2.1 to 2.4 times in standard length, the body width contained 2.3 to 2.8 times in the depth. Head length contained 2.5 to 2.7 times in standard length; interorbital area convex; dorsal head profile steep, straight or slightly concave along the snout and distinctly convex from eye to dorsal fin; preorbital depth contained 6.5 to 9.2 times in head length; preopercle finely serrate, the lower edge fleshy; subopercle and interopercle smooth or with minute serrae; opercle with 3 flat spines, the middle one closer to the lower spine; upper edge of operculum convex; rear nostrils round or oval, not much larger than front ones; maxilla reaches past eye; ventroposterior corner of maxilla with a distinct bony protuberance; supramaxilla slender; small canines at front of jaws, none elsewhere; 2 to 4 rows of small slender teeth at side of lower jaw; palatine teeth present. Gill rakers 8 to 10 on upper limb, 15 to 17 on lower limb, the longest gill raker slightly longer than longest gill filaments. Dorsal fin with IX spines and 17 or 18 rays, the fin origin over opercle; dorsal-fin membranes slightly incised between the spines, the third or fourth spine longest; anal fin with III spines and 8 or 9 rays; middle dorsal and anal-fin rays elongate in adults, giving these fins an angular profile, with the rear margin almost vertical; pectoral fins asymmetric, with 17 to 19 rays, the fifth or sixth ray longest; a well-developed scaly flap of skin joining upper pectoral-fin rays to body; pelvic fins subequal to pectoral fins, reaching to or beyond anus; caudal fin truncate, with 8 branched rays and 9 procurrent rays in upper part and 7 branched rays and 8 procurrent rays in lower part. Scales on body ctenoid, with auxiliary scales; lateral-line scales 48 to 54; lateral-scale series 94 to 104. Pyloric caeca 10. Supraneural bones 2, not noticeably curved; dorsal and anal fins with 3 or 4 trisegmental pterygiophores; rear edge of first dorsal-fin pterygiophore not excavated for tip of third neural spine; epipleural ribs on vertebrae 1 to 10; cranium cuneiform, high posteriorly, with an elevated supraoccipital crest continuous with a well-developed median crest on the frontals; parietal crests convergent anteriorly, not reaching frontals; dorsolateral crests on frontals are approximately parallel, project laterally and are medial to and separate from the postorbital processes; interorbital region of cranium distinctly convex.
Colour: Dark brown to black, occasionally with an orange cast, usually with a pale vertical bar on side of abdomen; distal part of spinous dorsal fin dark orange to brownish red: inside of mouth, gill cavity and upper jaw membranes reddish orange. Juveniles with a broad white posterior margin on caudal fin and a narrow white margin on soft dorsal fin: Allen and Steen (in Allen, G.R., and R.C. Steene. 1987. Reeffishes of the Indian Ocean. Pacific Marine Fishes, Book 10. T.F.H. Publications, Inc., Neptune City, New Jersey) show a 30 cm total length juvenile from the Maldives with a yellow-green spot on each body scale and the median fins with a pale bluish grey margin posteriorly.


Red Sea to South Africa and east to the Gilbert Islands (Kiribati) in the central Pacific; Japan, Philippines, Indonesia, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Caroline Islands, Palau, Thailand, India, Pakistan, Persian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, and probably all of the tropical islands of the Indian Ocean (although not yet found at Reunion or Mauritius).


Aethaloperca prefers well-developed coral reefs in depths of 3 to at least 60 m. Usually seen in or near caves and holes in the reef. Morgans (1982) reported that small fishes (including Pempheris sp., a common cave dweller) are the primary food of this species, and that it also eats stomatopods (Pseudosquilla sp.). Preliminary data indicate that it spawns at any time of the year and matures (females?) at a length of about 35 cm standard length (Morgans, 1982).


Maximum 60 cm total length.


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 [6441]

Froese R., Pauly D. (eds.): FishBase []
CZ AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [species/373]

Plíštil J. (Ed.) (2009): AQUATAB. World Wide Web electronic publication [] [as Aethaloperca rogaa (Forsskål, 1775)]
Data retrieved on: 17 January 2010
EN IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018-1 [132814]

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species [] [as Aethaloperca rogaa (Forsskål, 1775)]
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 Aethaloperca rogaa (Forsskål, 1775)]
Data retrieved on: 19 August 2019

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