Goldspotted Rockcod, Epinephelus coioides Click to enlarge image
A Goldspotted Rockcod at a depth of 28m, wreck of the Yongala, off Townsville, Queensland, November 2001. Image: Erik Schlögl
© Erik Schlögl

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    coioides
    Genus
    Epinephelus
    Family
    Serranidae
    Order
    Perciformes
    Class
    Actinopterygii
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    The species grows to 1 m in length.

Introduction

The Estuary Cod is brown above, whitish below and has oblique bars on the body. It is recorded in tropical and warm temperate marine waters of the Indo-West Pacific.



Identification

The Estuary Cod is brown above and whitish below. It has five irregular, oblique bars on the body that bifurcate ventrally. There are numerous small orange-brown spots on the head, body and median fins. The spots are pupil-sized in small fish (see middle image) but become relatively smaller and more numerous as the fish ages.

Habitat

Young fish are usually found in estuaries and silty areas although have also been reported from freshwaters. Adults are often found in marine offshore areas at depths around 100 m.

Distribution

The Estuary Cod is recorded in tropical and warm temperate marine waters of the Indo-West Pacific. In Australia it is known from the central coast of Western Australia, around the tropical north, and south to northern New South Wales.

The map below shows the Australian distribution of the species based on public sightings and specimens in Australian Museums. Source: Atlas of Living Australia.



Feeding and diet

It eats mainly fishes and crustaceans.

References

  1. Kuiter, R.H. 1996. Guide to Sea Fishes of Australia. New Holland. Pp. 433.
  2. Heemstra, P.C. & J.E. Randall. 1993. Groupers of the World. (Family Serranidae, Subfamily Epinephelinae). An Annotated and Illustrated Catalogue of Grouper, Rockcod, Hind, Coral Grouper and Lyretail Species Known to Date. FAO Species Catalogue. Vol. 16. FAO. Rome. Pp. 382.