Epinephelus maculatus

Highfin grouper EEC
Characteristic features:

Pale brown with many small close-set dark-brown spots, 2 large faint dusky blotches on body below dorsal fin.


Up to 60 cm TL.


West Central Pacific in tropical waters.


Coral reefs, from 2 to 100 m depth.

Indonesian fisheries:

Caught with hook-and-line, spear, and traps.

Similar species:

Epinephelus corallicola
Coral grouper

Epinephelus corallicola

Epinephelus corallicola differs in having upper edge of operculum convex (vs. straight) and spots on head, body and fins widely-spaced (vs. closely spaced).

Epinephelus longispinis
Longspine grouper

Epinephelus longispinis

Epinephelus longispinis differs in having widely-spaced, small, reddish-brown spots on head and front half of body, becoming obliquely elongated and closer together posteriorly (vs. round to hexagonal shaped spots closely-set and consistent over whole body).

Epinephelus magniscuttis
Spotted grouper

Epinephelus magniscuttis

Epinephelus magniscuttis differs in having dark brown spots small, distinctly smaller than pupil size (vs. larger, only slightly smaller than pupil size) and no spots below level with pectoral fin, anal fin or paired fins (vs. spots present on these fins).

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