Comprehensive DescriptionRead full entry
| Common names: grouper (English), mero (Espanol) |
Epinephelus mystacinus (Poey, 1852)
Body robust, compressed; large eyes; end of top jaw exposed; operculum edge with 3 flat spines; preoperculum without spines, lower corner rounded; 14-16 rakers on first gill arch; dorsal fin with XI spines (3rd longest), 14-15 rays; anal fin with III spines, 9 rays; lateral line complete, ending at tail base, smoothly arched; large eyes; pelvics shorter than pectoral, inserted under pectoral base; scales rough, small, 58-69 on lateral line; tail rounded to bluntly straight.
Adult: Chocolate brown with pale spots and 9-10 dark bars on head and body, those on body extending onto dorsal and anal fins, last one on tail base widest and darkest; 3 oblique dark stripes on side of head -1 along top of upper jaw and on cheek, 2 behind eye and on operculum. Juvenile: like adult but also with a dark head, and a broad black bar across tail base.
Size: 115 cm.
Habitat: rocky reef.
Depth: 12-400 m.
A neotropical species; in the eastern Pacific known only from the Galapagos.