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Mycteroperca tigris - Tiger grouper

Mycteroperca tigris - Tiger grouper Photo courtesy: Geoff Schultz

Tiger groupers are easily recognized by 9 dark diagonal bars on their back. Juveniles are mostly yellow with dark markings appearing as they mature. They can grow to approximately 3-1/2 feet in length. Like all groupers, tiger groupers have large mouths so they can swallow fish and crustaceans whole. They are usually found resting on the bottom in secluded spots near coral reefs and walls.

Distribution, Stock Structure and Migration
Western Atlantic: southern Florida (USA) and the Gulf of Mexico to Brazil. It was suggested that Mycteroperca tigris was a transient species in the northwestern Gulf of Mexico, but has recently become abundant on the Flower Garden Banks off Texas.

A solitary species occurring in coral reefs and rocky areas. It is considered an ambush predator that hides among the coral and sponges and is easy to approach.

Food of 59 specimens 15 to 57 cm SL were purely fishes of a variety of species.

Quick Fact
Tiger groupers are frequently seen at cleaning stations where they are occasionally bright red in color.

Learn More
- FishBase

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