Although commonly called ‘groper’ in New Zealand, the haiku (Poly prion oxygenate) and bass (P. Americans) are actually ‘wreck fishes’ belonging to the family Polyprionidae. Spotted black grouper are only found in southeast Australia (Spencer Gulf to southern Queensland, excluding Tasmania), Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs, Lord Howe and Norfolk Islands, and northern New Zealand.
In New Zealand the largest and possibly only breeding population is found in the Germanic Islands Marine Reserve. Around mainland New Zealand spotted black grouper are relatively common on shallow reefs at Three Kings Islands and along Northland’s rocky east coast.
Small juveniles have been recorded as far south as Dominika on the west coast, and Palmier Bay in the east. Spotted black grouper inhabit rocky reefs in estuaries and on the open coast to at least 50 m depth.
At the Germanic Islands small juvenile spotted black grouper are found in large intertidal rock pools as well as amongst boulders at 20 to 30 m depth. Spotted black grouper appear to have had very little fishing pressure anywhere in New Zealand, however those in eastern Australia are considered to be heavily depleted by line, set net and spear fishers.
Spotted black grouper are opportunistic predators of smaller reef fishes and crustaceans (shrimps, crabs and rock lobster). Spotted black grouper are vulnerable to a variety of fishing methods due to their large size, territorial behavior and natural curiosity.
Populations in eastern Australia are considered to be overfished and their estuaries nursery habitats are threatened by coastal development and pollution. It is not illegal to accidentally catch a spotted black grouper but it must be released alive and unharmed.
Spotted black groupers may suffer internal damage from hooks and over-expansion of their swim bladder if caught by accident. Like whales, large filter-feeding sharks and rays can accidentally ingest these, and all species suffer from entanglement in marine debris.
Grouper Malabar grouper, Epimetheus malarious Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Actinopterygii Order: Performed Family: Serranidae Subfamily: EpinephelinaeBleeker, 1874 Tribes and genera Not all errands are called 'groupers'; the family also includes the sea basses. The common name grouper is usually given to fish in one of two large genera : Epimetheus and Mycteroperca.
In addition, the species classified in the small genera Hyperion, Completes, Dermatologist, Graciela, Scotia, and Trio are also called 'groupers'. However, some hamlets (genus Affected), the hinds (genus Cephalopods), the lyre tails (genus Various) and some other small genera (Gonioplectrus, Nippon, Paranoia) are also in this subfamily, and occasional species in other serrated genera have common names involving the word grouper “.
They can be quite large, and lengths over a meter and the largest is the Atlantic Goliath grouper (Epimetheus Tamara) which has been weighed at 399 kilograms (880 pounds) and a length of 2.43 m (7 ft 11 1 2 in), though in such a large group, species vary considerably. They do not have many teeth on the edges of their jaws, but they have heavy crushing tooth plates inside the pharynx.
They habitually eat fish, octopuses, and crustaceans. Reports of fatal attacks on humans by the largest species, such as the giant grouper (Epimetheus lanceolatus) are unconfirmed.
They also use their mouths to dig into sand to form their shelters under big rocks, jetting it out through their gills. The word grouper is from the Portuguese name, group, which has been speculated to come from an indigenous South American language.
In New Zealand, “groper” refers to a type of wreck fish, Poly prion oxygenate, which goes by the Mori name haiku. In the Middle East, the fish is known as hammer ', and is widely eaten, especially in the Persian Gulf region.
The species in the tribes Grammistini and Diploprionini secrete a mucus like toxin in their skin called Rammstein and when they are confined in a restricted space and subjected to stress the mucus produces a foam which is toxic to nearby fish, these fishes are often called soap fishes. Jordan, 1923 Tribe Epinephrine Sleeker, 1874 Aethaloperca Fowler, 1904 Affected Bloch & Schneider, 1801 Anyperodon Gunther, 1859 Cephalopods Bloch & Schneider, 1801 Chromites Swanson, 1839 Dermatologist Gill, 1861 Epimetheus Bloch, 1793 Gonioplectrus Gill, 1862 Graciela Randall, 1964 Hyporthodus Gill, 1861 Mycteroperca Gill, 1862 Paranoia Guillemot, 1868 Plectropomus Pen, 1817 Scotia J.L.B.
Smith, 1964 Trio Randall, Johnson & Lowe, 1989 Various Swanson, 1839 The largest males often control harems containing three to 15 females.
Groupers often pair spawn, which enables large males to competitively exclude smaller males from reproducing. As such, if a small female grouper were to change sex before it could control a harem as a male, its fitness would decrease.
If no male is available, the largest female that can increase fitness by changing sex will do so. Gonochorism, or a reproductive strategy with two distinct sexes, has evolved independently in groupers at least five times.
The evolution of gonochorism is linked to group spawning high amounts of habitat cover. Both group spawning and habitat cover increase the likelihood of a smaller male to reproduce in the presence of large males.
Fitness of male groupers in environments where competitive exclusion of smaller males is not possible is correlated with sperm production and thus testicle size. Gonochoristic groupers have larger testes than protogynous groupers (10% of body mass compared to 1% of body mass), indicating the evolution of gonochorism increased male grouper fitness in environments where large males were unable to competitively exclude small males from reproducing.
Many groupers are important food fish, and some of them are now farmed. Unlike most other fish species which are chilled or frozen, groupers are usually sold live in markets.
Groupers are commonly reported as a source of Ciguatera fish poisoning. DNA barcoding of grouper species might help in controlling Ciguatera fish poisoning since fish are easily identified, even from meal remnants, with molecular tools.
In September 2010, a Costa Rican newspaper reported a 2.3 m (7 ft 7 in) grouper in Cieneguita, Limón. The weight of the fish was 250 kg (550 lb) and it was lured using one kilogram of bait.
In November 2013, a 310 kg (680 lb) grouper had been caught and sold to a hotel in Dong yuan, China. ^ a b c d e Richard van der Loan; William N. Scholar & Ronald Cricket (2014).
^ Share, Redoubt; Honer, Andrea; Ait-El-Djoudi, Karim; Cricket, Hans (2006). “Interspecific Communicative and Coordinated Hunting between Groupers and Giant Moray Eels in the Red Sea”.
“Rammstein, the skin toxin of soap fishes, and it significance in the classification of the Grammistidae” (PDF). Publications of the Set Marine Biological Laboratory.
^ Scholar, William N. ; Cricket, Ron & van der Loan, Richard (eds.). A phylogenetic test of the size-advantage model: Evolutionary changes in mating behavior influence the loss of sex change in a fish lineage.
Estimates of body sizes at maturation and at sex change, and the spawning seasonality and sex ratio of the endemic Hawaiian grouper (Hyporthodus Quercus, f. Epinephelidae). Constant relative age and size at sex change for sequentially hermaphroditic fish.
A new version of the size-advantage hypothesis for sex change: Incorporating sperm competition and size-fecundity skew. Sex change in fishes: Its process and evolutionary mechanism.
Evidence of gonochorism in a grouper, Mycteroperca rosacea, from the Gulf of California, Mexico. ^ Molly, P. P., N. B. Goodwin, I. M. Cote, J. D. Reynolds and M. J. G. Gage.
Sperm competition and sex change: A comparative analysis across fishes. ^ Crib, T. H., Bray, R. A., Wright, T. & Michelin, S. 2002: The trematodes of groupers (Serranidae: Epinephrine): knowledge, nature and evolution.
^ Justine, J.-L., Beveridge, I., Box shall, G. A., Bray, R. A., Morale, F., Triples, J.-P. & Whittington, I. D. 2010: An annotated list of parasites (Isopod, Coppola, Monotone, Diogenes, Custody and Nematode) collected in groupers (Serranidae, Epinephrine) in New Caledonia emphasizes parasite biodiversity in coral reef fish. Folio Parasitologica, 57, 237-262. Doi : 10.14411/fp.2010.032 PDF ^ “Most consumers prefer to purchase live groupers in fish markets”.
^ Schooling, C., Kissinger, D. D., Detail, A., Fraud, C. & Justine, J.-L. 2014: A phylogenetic re-analysis of groupers with applications for ciguatera fish poisoning. ^ ^ “Photos: Fishermen catch wildly huge 686-pound fish, sell it to hotel”.