Species Details

Details of Camouflage grouper will be displayed below

Camouflage grouper   

Common Name: Camouflage grouper
Scientific Name: Epinephelus polyphekadion
Local Name: Kula faana
Dhivehi Name: ކުލަ ފާނަ
Animalia  (Kingdom)
Chordata  (Plylum)
Perciformes  (Order)
Serranidae  (Family)
Epinephelus   (Genus)

Camouflage grouper's description

Dorsal fin with 11 spines and 14-15 rays. Anal fin with 3 spines and 8 rays. Pectoral fin with 18-19 rays. Body depth 2.7-3.1 in standard length. Dorsal head profile smoothly convex. Inter- orbital area flat. Mid-lateral body scales mostly ctenoid, not covered by skin. Rear nostril diameter about twice diameter of front nostrils. Caudal fin rounded. Color is Mottled brown, covered with small dark spots. Head and body with fairly distinct dark blotches, blotch on top of caudal peduncle brownish-black and conspicuous.

Camouflage grouper habitat

Usually found in coral-rich areas of lagoon and outer reefs. Most abundant around islands, particularly atolls. Usually in small schools (Heemstra and Randall 1993). It occurs at depths of 2 to 46 m (Myers 1999).

Biology
In one study in Palau, mature females were between 301 and 470 mm fork length, mature males between 340 and 500 mm and immature fish between 239 and 286 mm, indicating sexual maturation occurred between about 290 and 300 mm fork length in Palau (Johannes et al. 1999). Tamaru et al. (1996) reported a female to male (f:m) sex ratio of 1:4 in Palau, while the female to male ratio was 2.9 in a New Caledonia lagoon (Loubens 1980). Spawning occurs between June and August.

A study based in Pohnpei on reproductive biology, spawning and genetic structure of E. polyphekadion showed that spawning occurred at night, for several nights during the full moon period during each of several months between February and April (Rhodes and Sadovy 2002a, b). Males entered spawning sites before females and a significant proportion of the fish can be removed during one aggregation period (despite some protection, not all aggregation months are protected). Sexual maturation in 50% of females was about 270 mm SL in Pohnpei and there was no evidence for sex change in the species (Rhodes and Sadovy 2002a, b). It is possible that, in Pohnpei, there is population sub-structuring of this species (Rhodes et al. 2003).

Saudi Arabia has succeeded in cross breeding two species of groupers, with good grow-out potential for aquaculture: Epinephelus polyphekadion x E. fuscoguttatus (James et al. 1998).

Camouflage grouper threats

Commercial and recreational fishing, including the life reef fish trade, and also habitat degradation of coral reefs.

Trade statistics
E. polyphekadion is one of the most commonly consumed live reef food fish in Hong Kong, the main countries of origin were the Philippines and Indonesia. A survey of the imports of 39 of the 114 companies that trade live fish with Hong Kong (Lau and Parry-Jones 1999), revealed that E. polyphekadion made up 5% (approx. 1,200 t) of the total annual volume of fish imported into Hong Kong for this trade. Sold in the Hong Kong live reef fish food market, the highest proportion at 35–45 cm length (Lee and Sadovy 1998). In Hong Kong, maturity size range is 31–35cm TL, and common consuming size is 33.57–52.41 cm TL (Lau and Parry- Jones 1999). The amount imported between 1999–2002 into Hong Kong is shown in Table 2 in the Supplementary Material.

Camouflage grouper's status