Yellowspotted Rockcod, Epinephelus areolatus (Forsskal 1775)


Other Names: Areolate Grouper, Areolate Rock Cod, Areolate Rockcod, Areolated Grouper, Green-spotted Rock-cod, Squaretail Grouper, Squaretail Rock-cod, Yellow Spot Rock Cod, Yellow Spotted Rock Cod, Yellow Spotted Rockcod, Yellow-spotted Rockcod, Yellow-spotted Rock-cod

A Yellowspotted Rockcod, Epinephelus areolatus, at Tulamben, Bali, Indonesia. Source: Dennis Polack / FishWise Professional. License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike

Summary:
A pale grouper with a dense covering of large round orange to brown spots that become more numerous and relatively smaller as the fish grows, and a truncate tail with a narrow white margin.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2019, Epinephelus areolatus in Fishes of Australia, accessed 27 Jan 2020, http://136.154.202.208/home/species/4663

Yellowspotted Rockcod, Epinephelus areolatus (Forsskal 1775)

More Info


Distribution

North West Cape and offshore reefs of north Western Australia to off Bowen, Queensland; also reefs in the Lord Howe Island region in the Tasman Sea. Elsewhere the species occurs in the tropical, Indo-west-central Pacific.
Inhabits soft sediment areas adjacent to reefs.

Features

Dorsal fin XI, 15-17; Anal fin III, 8; Pectoral fin 17-19; Gill rakers (first arch) 8-10 + 14-16; Lateral-line scales 49-53; Pyloric caeca 11-17. 
Body depth less than head length, 2.7-3.3 in SL (for specimens 14-31 cm SL); head length 2.4-2.8 in SL; preopercle with 2-7 enlarged serrae at the angle; upper edge of operculum straight or slightly convex; midlateral part of lower jaw with 2 rows of teeth. Body scales ctenoid, cycloid scales on thorax and ventrally on abdomen; body with auxiliary scales.Anal fin of adults rounded to slightly angular, longest soft ray 2.0-2.6 in HL; caudal fin slightly convex in juveniles, truncate or slightly emarginate in adults. 

Colour

Colour of head, body, and fins pale, covered with numerous close-set brown, brownish yellow or greenish yellow spots (becoming smaller and increase in number as growth increases), the largest about size of pupil, those on front of head smaller than those on operculum; pectoral fins pale, with small dark spots on the rays; posterior edge of caudal fin with a distinct white margin.

Feeding

Feed on fishes and benthic invertebrates, mainly prawns and crabs.

Fisheries

The species is taken in commercial trawl fisheries in northern Australia, and is also taken on hook and line by recreational anglers.

Similar Species


The Yellowspotted Rockcod lacks the dark blotches along the dorsal-fin base of the similar Frostback Rockcod, Epinephelus bilobatus.

Species Citation

Perca areolata Forskål 1775. Descriptiones Animalium: 42. Type locality: Jeddah, Red Sea.

Author

Bray, D.J. 2019

Resources

Atlas of Living Australia

Yellowspotted Rockcod, Epinephelus areolatus (Forsskal 1775)

References


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

Allen, G.R. & Erdmann, M.V. 2012. Reef fishes of the East Indies. Perth : Tropical Reef Research 3 vols, 1260 pp.

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. 

Boulenger, G.A. 1895. Catalogue of the Fishes in the British Museum. Catalogue of the perciform fishes. London : British Museum Vol. 1 394 pp. 15 pls. 

Craig, M.T., Pondella II, D.J., Franck, J.P.C. & Hafner, J.C. 2001. On the status of the serranid fish genus Epinephelus: evidence for paraphyly based upon 16S rDNA sequence. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 19(1): 121-130.

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. 

Forskål, P. 1775. Descriptiones Animalium Avium, Amphibiorum, Piscium, Insectorum, Vermium; quæ in Itinere Orientali observavit Petrus Forskål. Post Mortem Auctoris edidit Carsten Niebuhr. Adjuncta est Materia Medica Kakirina atque Tabula Maris Rubri Geographica. Hauniæ : Mölleri 1-19, i-xxxiv, 164 pp., 1 map. See ref at BHL

Gill, A.C. & Reader, S.E. 1992. Fishes. pp. 90-93, 193-228 in Hutchings, P. (ed.) Reef Biology. A Survey of Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs, South Pacific. Canberra : Australian National Parks Vol. 3, Kowari 230 pp. 

Gloerfelt-Tarp, T. & Kailola, P.J. 1984. Trawled Fishes of Southern Indonesia and Northwest Australia. Jakarta : Dir. Gen. Fish. (Indonesia), German Tech. Coop., Aust. Dev. Ass. Bur. 406 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 pp. 2069-2790. 

Johnson, J.W. & Gill, A.C. 2005. Reef and shore fishes of Sweers Island, Gulf of Carpentaria. Gulf of Carpentaria Scientific Study Report. Geography Monograph Series. Brisbane: Royal Geographic Society of Queensland. pp. 239-260 

Kailola, P.J., Williams, M.J., Stewart, P.C., Reichelt, R.E., McNee, A. & Grieve, C. 1993. Australian Fisheries Resources. Canberra : Bureau of Resource Sciences and the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation 422 pp. 

Kuiter, R.H. 1992. Tropical Reef-Fishes of the Western Pacific, Indonesia and Adjacent Waters. Jakarta : PT Gramedia Pustaka Utama 314 pp. pls. 

Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. A comprehensive reference for divers and fishermen. Sydney, NSW, Australia : New Holland Publishers xvii, 434 pp.

Larson, H.K., Williams, R.S. & Hammer, M.P. 2013. An annotated checklist of the fishes of the Northern Territory, Australia. Zootaxa 3696(1): 1-293

Leis, J.M. 1987. Review of the early life history of tropical groupers (Serranidae) and snappers (Lutjanidae), pp. 189-237. In: Polovina, J.J. & Ralston, S. (eds). Tropical Snappers and Groupers. Biology and Fisheries Management, Westview Press, Boulder, USA.

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  

Randall, J.E. 2005. Reef and shore fishes of the South Pacific. New Caledonia to Tahiti and the Pitcairn Islands. Honolulu : University of Hawaii Press 707 pp. 

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 507 pp. figs. 

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs. 

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.

Russell, B.C. & Houston, W. 1989. Offshore fishes of the Arafura Sea. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 6(1): 69-84

Russell, B., Pollard, D., Cornish, A., Kulbicki, M., Yeeting, B. & Fennessy, S. 2008. Epinephelus areolatus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T132774A3447992. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2008.RLTS.T132774A3447992.en. Downloaded on 15 September 2017.

Sainsbury, K.J., Kailola, P.J. & Leyland, G.G. 1984. Continental Shelf Fishes of Northern and North-Western Australia. Canberra : Fisheries Information Service 375 pp. figs & pls.

Salini, J.P., Blaber, S.J. & Brewer, D.T. 1994. Diets of trawled predatory fish of the Gulf of Carpentaria, Australia, with particular reference to predation on prawns. Australian Journal of Freshwater Research 45(3): 397-411.

Shapiro, D.Y. 1987. Reproduction in groupers. p. 295-327. In J.J. Polovina & S. Ralston (eds) Tropical snappers and groupers. Biology and fisheries management. Westview Press, Boulder, USA.

Quick Facts


CAAB Code:37311009

Conservation:Hermaphrodite

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:6-200 m

Fishing:Commercial/recreational fish

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:50 cm TL

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Species Maps

CAAB distribution map