mottled grouper

Scientific name Mycteroperca rubra
Descriptor Bloch
Year of description 1793
IUCN category (World) LC
Family Serranidae
Genus Mycteroperca
Mycteroperca rubra Mycteroperca rubra


Mycteroperca rubra, commonly known as mottled grouper, is a salt water fish.

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Who is it?


  • Average size
    80 cm
  • Maximum size
    144 cm
  • Longevity
    25 year
  • Mimicry
  • Pattern
  • Average size
    80 cm
  • Maximum size
    144 cm
  • Longevity
    25 year
  • Mimicry
  • Pattern

How to recognize the mottled grouper ?

The mottled grouper measures around 80 cm. The dominant males can however reach 144 cm. This fish is bicolore with a predominantly argent and marron body. The also has argent multiple.

Sexual dimorphism

The adult male is bigger than the female.

Behaviour & Life cycle

  • diet
  • Sociability
  • territorial
  • Way of living

The mottled grouper is a fish solitary naturally found at mid-depth and near the bottom. This species is carnivorous .

This species is territorial and does not appreciate the presence of intruders nearby, especially animals with similar behavior. It can also be virulent toward conspecifics. However, the mottled grouper has little concern for non-territorial animals. In a constant quest for dominance, the dominant males of this species cannot stand each other. The battle between two individuals can be intense and violent. It will result in the submission and sometimes even death of one of the protagonists.


  • Reproduction
    ovipare qui pond en eau libre
  • Hermaphrodite

The mottled grouper is a fish ovipare qui pond en eau libre. always born female. Growing up, individuals will change sex to become male, this is called successive hermaphroditism of the protogynous type.

Harmless species

This species does not represent any particular threats to humans when encountered in its natural environment.

Where to find it?

What is its habitat?

Natural environment characteristics

  • Temperature
    15 - 26 °C
  • Depth
    15 - 50 m
  • Flow
    Medium and Slow

Biotope presentation

The mottled grouper is most often found at a depth between 15m and 50m. However, it is not impossible to find this species at other depths.

To go further

Species of the same family

To read on the web

Sources & Contributions

Participation & Validation

The Fishipedia team and specialist contributors are committed to providing high-quality content. However, although the information comes from scientific sources or testimonials from specialists, the cards may contain inaccuracies.

Benoit Chartrer

Benoit Chartrer

Aurélien Calas

Aurélien Calas


Translation done with the valuable contribution of our translators, who make this information available to a wider audience. We sincerely thank them for their commitment.

Bibliographic references

ECOLOGY OF THE MOTTLED GROUPER (MYCTEROPERCA RUBRA) IN THE EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN - Andrey Aronov - Menachem Goren - Electronic Journal of Ichthyology - 2008.

Les relations des espèces de mérous à leur habitat – Epinephelus marginatus, E. costae et Mycteroperca rubra - dans la région de Kas, Turquie, Méditerranée Orientale - LOUISY Patrick - GANTEAUME Anne - FRANCOUR Patrice - 2nd Symposium on Mediterranean Groupers - 2007.

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Scientific partners

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