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Yellowfin Grouper

Mycteroperca venenosa


Illustration of a yellowfin grouper
  • Body is greenish-olive or bright red
  • Oval groups of dark spots form horizontal rows on the body
  • Outer third of pectoral fins are bright yellow
  • Small bright red spots are found on lower parts of large individuals

Similar Species: Black grouper, M. bonaci (lacks bright yellow on outer third of pectoral fins)

Size: Common to 20 pounds 


Coastal to offshore waters, typically near reefs. Juveniles found in seagrass beds.


Undergoes sex reversal from female to male in latter part of life. Scientific name translates to "venomous," alluding to the fact that this fish, perhaps more frequently than other groupers, is associated with ciguatera poisoning. 

Feeds on fishes and squid.

Additional Information

State Record: 34 lb 6 oz, caught near Key Largo

Recreational Regulations


Image Credit: © Diane Rome Peebles