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Coney
Epinephelus fulvus
(Linnaeus, 1758)

Description:
Body strong and stout, with a large mouth. The species display several color phases. Shades of reddish brown to brown are most common (E. fulvus), but also a bicolor phase (upper dark and lower pale (E. fulvus bicolor phase)) and a brilliant yellow-gold phase exist. Dorsal edge of the base of the tail with two prominent black spots and a pair of black blotches on the tip of the lower jaw. The body often has small blue scattered spots.
Size up to 41 cm.

Habitat:
Prefers coral reefs and clear water, found till depths of 45 m. Males are territorial. Feeds mainly on small fish and crustaceans that are drawn into their gullets by a powerful suction created when they open their large mouths. Held securely by thousands of small, rasp-like teeth that cover the jaws, tongue and palate, the prey is swallowed whole. May follow morays and snake eels to feed on flushed preys. Groupers are hermaphroditic, beginning life as females, but changing to males with maturity. Females maturing at 16 cm and transforming to males at about 20 cm.

Distribution:
Common to occasional Florida and Bahamas, common Caribbean.

Coney (Epinephelus fulvus)