Myctoperca Monaco has an oblong, literally compressed body with a standard length which is 3.3 to 3.5 times its depth. It has an evenly rounded properly with no incisions or lobes at its angle.
The caudal fin is truncate to marginate, although it may be convex if spread widely. This species has an overall t’s an olive gray color and is marked with dark blotches and brassy hexagonal spots over the head and flanks.
This fish attains a maximum total length of 150 centimeters (59 in), although they are more common at around 70 centimeters (28 in) and a maximum published weight of 100 kilograms (220 lb). Mycteroperca Monaco occurs over rocky bottoms and coral reefs at depths of 10 to 30 meters (33 to 98 ft), however in the eastern Gulf of Mexico it is normally encountered at depths of more than 30 meters (98 ft).
It is usually a solitary species, the adults feeding mainly on fishes, such as grunts, snapper and herrings, and the juveniles feed on crustaceans. Black groupers have been recorded forming seasonal feeding aggregations along the outer continental shelf off Brazil, these coincide with spawning aggregations of some fish species the groupers prey on.
They are is a monastic protogynous hermaphrodites, and they form spawning aggregations and these have been reported from in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea. Females attain sexual maturity at around 5years old and at a length of around 82.6 centimeters (32.5 in) and the change of sex to males occurs when they are around 15 years old and at a mean length of 121.4 centimeters (47.8 in).
Groupers of the world (family Serranidae, subfamily Epinephrine). An annotated and illustrated catalog of the grouper, rock cod, hind, coral grouper and lyre tail species known to date (PDF).
U.S. wild-caught black grouper is a smart seafood choice because it is sustainably managed and responsibly harvested under U.S. regulations. Fishing gears used to harvest black grouper have minimal impacts on habitat.
They are particularly associated with the southern Gulf of Mexico, Florida Keys, Cuba, the Bahamas, and throughout the Caribbean. Annual catch limits are used for black grouper in the commercial and recreational fisheries.
These fisheries are closed when their annual catch limit is projected to be met. Both the commercial and recreational fisheries have size limits to reduce harvest of immature black grouper.
The commercial and recreational fishing seasons are closed from January through April to protect black grouper during their peak spawning period. To reduce by catch, there are restrictions on the type of gear fishermen may use and where they can fish.
Minimum size limits protect immature black grouper. Year-round and/or seasonal area closures for commercial and recreational sectors to protect spawning groupers.
Groupers are managed separately by commercial and recreational sector in Puerto Rico. Seasonal closure for black, red, tiger, yellow fin, and yellow edge groupers from February 1 through April 30.
Species Habitat Black grouper are found in the western Atlantic Ocean with ranges extending from Massachusetts to Brazil. They are particularly associated with the southern Gulf of Mexico, Florida Keys, Cuba, the Bahamas, and throughout the Caribbean.
Juveniles can occur in seagrass and oyster rubble habitat in the Carolina's, and along reefs in the Florida Keys and in Brazil. Adults prefer rocky bottoms, drop-off walls and ledges, caves, crevices, and coral and artificial reefs.
While they are relatively sedentary and can remain in one particular site for some time, black grouper move to progressively deeper waters as they age. They used passive acoustic recorders to monitor sound production indicative of spawning habitat use by groupers at Riley’s Hump in the Tortuga's South Ecological Reserve in Florida, the first known US spawning site for black grouper.
This study illustrated the importance of the Tortuga's South Ecological Reserve and called for continued research in order to understand its role in the recovery and sustainability of managed fish populations. Because of the vulnerability to overfishing associated with large aggregations and the biodiversity therein, it is important to consider spawning locations in the establishment of marine protected areas and seasonal closures.
The plan and its amendments include numerous measures to rebuild current populations. Limiting the number of available permits (both transferable and nontransferable) available to commercial fishers; Establishing annual catch limits for both commercial and recreational fishers; Establishing overall species quotas; Commercial and recreational size limits to reduce harvest of immature grouper ; Seasonal closures to protect spawning aggregations; Gear restrictions to protect habitat and reduce by catch; and, Eight deep-water marine protected areas closed to fishing and possession of snapper and grouper.
Established in 1984, the Reef Fish FMP and its amendments were designed to end historic overfishing for shallow water groupers and to rebuild populations. Establishes and allocates annual species-specific catch limits between commercial and recreational fishers for groupers and tile fish; Sets gear restrictions; Sets minimum size restrictions to protect immature grouper ; and, Establishes year round and seasonal area closures for both commercial and recreational fishers to protect spawning stock and essential fish habitat.
The If program allocates shares of the total commercial catch limit amongst individual fishers. Under the program, each fisher owns a share of the quota and can choose to fish it at anytime during the open season.
Strict commercial reporting requirements prevent fishers from harvesting more than their individual allocation. Red and black grouper are among the most important species caught in Mexico in terms of volume and economic value.
Most grouper, particularly those caught in the Mexican industrial bottom longline fishery, is imported to the US. Numerous entities are involved to some degree with creating, implementing, and enforcing fishery management strategies in Mexico.
Under SAGA RPA, the National Aquaculture and Fishing Commission (Coalesce) is charged with developing and carrying out fisheries management regulations. Wild Black grouper are found in the Atlantic from Massachusetts to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico.
Unlike red grouper, black grouper in the United States is considered to be one stock across both the South Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico regions. Grouper in generally are fairly long-lived and come together to spawn in large numbers, characteristics that make them vulnerable to fishing pressure.
A May 2014 Seafood Watch report stated that according to the most recent stock assessment in 2010, black grouper is not considered overfished. Grouper fisheries have high impacts on nontarget species, the Monterey Bay Aquarium reported.
The black grouper fisheries use hooking devices and circle hooks to reduce by catch. Venting tools are also employed to make it easier for reef fish to survive when released.
Management measures include permits, annual catch limits, fishing quotas, marine protected areas that are closed to fishing, seasonal closures, gear restrictions, minimum size limits, and data reporting requirements. Grouper is a salt-water fish, found on the menu in restaurants and within stores throughout the United States.
There are three varieties available that vary in flavor and price: red grouper, true black grouper, and gag. For a mild-tasting fish, it has very high levels of oil, which offers a pleasant buttery mouthfeel.
CharacteristicDescriptionTasteMild tasting with a faintly sweet undertoneTextureFirm, large flakesFishinessLow levelsOilinessHigh levelsColor White, once cooked The most common is the red grouper, which makes up approximately 70% of production each year.
If you don’t have a reliable source for fresh grouper, consider buying the frozen product. Its high levels of oil help it maintain a lovely moist texture even if it’s a little over-cooked.
It’s also tasty eaten on its own, on skewers, with a zesty lemon marinade, a creamy tartare sauce, or a combination of butter, garlic, and lime juice. The debate for whether grouper is best eaten with batter, crumbed, floured, or with nothing added will always rage on.
Blackening is a quick and straightforward method that produces moist fish encased in a flavor-packed coating. Although blackening is suited to outdoor grilling, you can also cook the fish in the oven or fry it in a pan.
Preheat a large skillet on the grill or stove top on high heat for at least 10 minutes. Rinse the fish fillets in cold water, then pat dry with paper towels.
Once all the ingredients are evenly distributed, transfer the mixture to a platter or large plate. Place the fillets on the seasoning mix and gently turn until they are well coated.
As groupers are a reef-dwelling fish, they have the potential to be contaminated by toxins, which can lead to Ciguatera poisoning. Your best option to avoid getting sick is to check with the seller if the fish comes from a hotspot for Ciguatera.
Some problem areas include the Caribbean Sea, Hawaii, and coastal Central America. A gulf grouper is a unique tasting, moist fish that is endemic to Mexico.
It is prized for its moist meat that easily flakes into big chunks once cooked. It’s relatively high oil content makes it a simple fish to avoid overcooking.
It is a blank canvas that allows the creative cook to pair exciting ingredients with the fish. If you enjoy fish that isn’t too full of flavor then you might also like to check out our sea bass guide.