Epinephelus lanceolatus (Bloch, 1790)
Giant grouper
Puol,  Bantol,  Bulang,  Kerapo,  Kugtong,  Kugtung,  Kurapu,  Lapu lapu,  Lapu-lapu,  Pugapo,  Tingag
Epinephelus lanceolatus
photo by To, W.-L.

Family:  Serranidae (Sea basses: groupers and fairy basslets), subfamily: Epinephelinae
Max. size:  270 cm TL (male/unsexed); max.weight: 400 kg
Environment:  reef-associated; depth range 1 - 200 m
Distribution:  Indo-Pacific: Red Sea to Algoa Bay, South Africa and eastward to the Hawaiian and Pitcairn islands, north to southern Japan, south to Australia. Absence in the Persian Gulf is puzzling.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 11-11; Dorsal soft rays (total): 14-16; Anal spines: 3-3; Anal soft rays: 8-8. Dorsal fin spines of large individuals increase in size from front to back. It is the largest of all coral reef dwelling bony fishes (Ref. 37816); overall dark grey color with variable amount of pale spots/blotches; cycloid scales on body; body with auxiliary scales; greatest depth of body 2.3-3.4 in SL; short pelvic fins, 23.0-2.7 in head length (Ref. 90102); further characterized by having head length 2.2-2.7 times in SL; interorbital width 3.3-6.2 times in HL; flat to slightly convex interorbital area, convex dorsal head profile; subangular preopercle, finely serrate, the angle rounded; convex upper edge of operculum; eye diameter 5.8-14 in head length; subequal anterior and posterior nostrils; maxilla reaching past vertical at rear edge of eye; 2-3 rows of teeth on midlateral part of lower jaw increasing to 15-16 rows in fish of 177 cm SL; small or absent canine teeth at front of jaws (Ref. 89707).
Biology:  The largest bony fish found in coral reefs (Ref. 9710). Common in shallow waters. Found in caves or wrecks; also in estuaries. Individuals more than a meter long have been caught from shore and in harbors. Juveniles secretive in reefs and rarely seen (Ref. 48635). Benthopelagic and benthic (Ref. 58302). Feed on spiny lobsters, fishes, including small sharks and batoids, and juvenile sea turtles and crustaceans. In South African estuaries, the main prey item is the mud crab, Scylla serrata. Unconfirmed reports of fatal attacks on humans. Nearly wiped out in heavily fished areas (Ref. 9710). In the Hong Kong live fish markets (Ref. 27253). Large individuals may be ciguatoxic (Ref. 37816).
IUCN Red List Status: Vulnerable(A2d) (Ref. 115185) , IUCN Grouper and Wrasse Specialist Group
Threat to humans:  traumatogenic
Country info:  Recorded from Lanuza Bay (Ref. 104756). Also Ref. 4787, 090102.

Entered by: Capuli, Estelita Emily - 15.10.92
Modified by: OrtaƱez, Auda Kareen - 10.10.14
Checked by: Capuli, Estelita Emily - 13.04.94

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