The Dusky Perch or (Epinephelus marginatus) can grow to a Max. of 1.4m.
Largest of the European sea perches with a well set body and head. The broad head lacks any bony ridges, and has a large mouth with depreciable teeth, and protruding lower jaw. Whilst the preoperculum exhibits a degree of fine serrations at it’s margins, the end of the operculum bears three distinct flat spines. Two dorsal fins are present, but are fused. The first dorsal fin is composed of some 11 membrane bound spines, followed by the second dorsal fin with it’s 13 to 16 branched rays. The anal fin has three anterior spines followed by 8 to 9 rays. The caudal fin is rounded, and the lateral line has 120 to 130 scales along it’s length. The base of the pectoral fin has an upper scaly flap. Coloration is a dark rich brown with irregular blotches and mottles, with more yellow tones towards the belly region. Fin edges exhibit a yellowish white trim, apart for the dorsal fins which tend towards more orange hues.
Spawns during the summer.
Tends to be a solitary fish, in shallow rocky waters around 30 to 50m, although may be encountered as deep as 400m
Feeds on cephalopods such as squid and octopus, along with a wide variety of fish, and crustaceans.
Northern limits of range just into SW waters of the UK
The Aqurium Project