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99. The Blackfin Grouper (Cephalopholis nigripinnis)


The Blackfin Grouper (Cephalopholis nigripinnis) is one of the smaller species of groupers of the Indian Ocean and is often confused with the Tomato Grouper (Cephalopholis sonnerati). Both species are called “Msye Angar” in Creole.

Groupers hunt near the bottom on little fish and crustaceans. Although their mouths are equipped with several rows of very sharp teeth, they swallow their prey whole. By opening their jaws rapidly they create a powerful suction that draws the victims into their throat.


Yawning in fishes is not fully understood, however it is believed to be a territorial display, to attract a mate or to deter aggressors. Often when a fish starts yawning it will repeat the action several times. When you see an individual yawning then it’s wise to position yourself with the camera ready so that you can catch his next display on film.

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