Oval Rockcod, Triso dermopterus (Temminck & Schlegel 1843)

Other Names: Blackfin Grouper, Melon-seed Grouper, Oval Cod, Oval Grouper, Sooty Cod, Woore's Rockcod, Woore's Rock-cod

An Oval Rockcod, Hyporthodus dermopterus (formerly Triso dermopterus). Source: Australian National Fish Collection, CSIRO. License: CC BY Attribution-Noncommercial

A deep-bodied oval-shaped cod with a dark brown to blackish body and dark fins. The species has 11 dorsal-fin spines, a rounded caudal fin, 2 small canine teeth at the front of the jaws on each side, and small rough scales.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2022, Triso dermopterus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 30 Nov 2022, https://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/4522

Oval Rockcod, Triso dermopterus (Temminck & Schlegel 1843)

More Info


Dampier Archipelago, Western Australia, and southern Queensland, to off Wallis Lake, New South Wales. Elsewhere the species is widespread in deep waters of the Western Pacific: Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and China. 
Inhabits rocky, silty-sand or muddy bottoms in depths to 103 metres.


Juveniles have been seen feeding on zooplankton in the water column.


Often taken as by-catch in bottom trawls. Highly regarded as a food fish.


In a genetic study of epinepheline groupers, Ma & Craig (2018) placed this species in the genus Hyporthodus.

Species Citation

Serranus dermopterus Temminck & Schlegel 1843, Fauna Japonica 4: 10. Type locality: Nagasaki, Japan. 


Bray, D.J. 2022


Australian Faunal Directory

Oval Rockcod, Triso dermopterus (Temminck & Schlegel 1843)


Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls.

Allen, G.R. & Swainston, R. 1988. The Marine Fishes of North-Western Australia. A field guide for anglers and divers. Perth, WA : Western Australian Museum vi 201 pp., 70 pls. (as Trisotropis dermopterus)

Cabanban, A.S., Choat, J.H. & Craig, M. 2008. Triso dermopterus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T132790A3452464. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2008.RLTS.T132790A3452464.en. Downloaded on 05 September 2018.

Craig, M.T., Sadovy de Mitcheson, Y.J. & Heemstra, P.C. 2011. Groupers of the World: a Field and Market Guide. Grahamstown, South Africa : NISC Ltd 356 pp., Appendix 47 pp.

Grant, E.M. 2002. Guide to Fishes. Redcliffe : EM Grant Pty Ltd 880 pp. 

Heemstra, P.C. & Randall, J.E. 1993. Groupers of the World (Family Serranidae, Subfamily Epinephelinae). An annotated and illustrated catalogue of grouper, rockcod, hind, coral grouper and lyretail species known to date. FAO Fisheries Synopsis No. 125 Vol. 16. Rome: FAO. pp. 1-382.

Heemstra, P.C. & Randall, J.E. 1999. Family Serranidae. pp. 2442-2548 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, T.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 4 2069-2790 pp.

Johnson, J.W. 2010. Fishes of the Moreton Bay Marine Park and adjacent continental shelf waters, Queensland, Australia. pp. 299-353 in Davie, P.J.F. & Phillips, J.A. Proceedings of the Thirteenth International Marine Biological Workshop, The Marine Fauna and Flora of Moreton Bay. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 54(3) 

Ma, K.Y. & Craig, M.T. 2018. An Inconvenient Monophyly: An Update on the Taxonomy of the Groupers (Epinephelidae). Copeia 106(3): 443–456. https://doi.org/10.1643/CI-18-055  (as Hyporthodus dermopterus)

Ma, K.Y., Craig, M.T., Choat, J.H. & van Herwerden, L. 2016. The historical biogeography of groupers: clade diversification patterns and processes. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 100: 21–30. 

Randall, J.E., Johnson, G.D. & Lowe, G.R. 1989. Triso, a new generic name for the serranid fish previously known as Trisotropis dermopterus, with comments on its relationships. Japanese Journal of Ichthyology 35(4): 414-420. 

Randall, J.E. & Heemstra, P.C. 1991. Revision of Indo-Pacific groupers (Perciformes: Serranidae: Epinephelinae), with descriptions of five new species. Indo-Pacific Fishes 20: 1-332. 

Temminck, C.J. & Schlegel, H. 1843. Pisces. 1-20 pls 1-7 in Siebold, P. Fr de (ed.). Fauna Japonica. Leyden : Apud Arnz & Socios Vol. 4. 

Whitley, G.P. 1951. Studies in Ichthyology No. 15. Records of the Australian Museum 22(4): 389-408 figs 1-14 (described as Altiserranus woorei, type locality - off Laurieton, New South Wales)

Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37311165


Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:10-103 m

Habitat:Rocky & soft bottoms

Max Size:68 cm

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Species Maps

CAAB distribution map