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What is the difference between a rock cod and a grouper? The only difference I notice is that grouper seems to be bigger in size. But other than that, they are very similar.

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    $\begingroup$ Added wiki links to your post. Adding links to content improve readability for curious and/or competent users, experts and those reviewing your posts. $\endgroup$
    – Tyto alba
    Jun 13, 2017 at 7:16
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    $\begingroup$ I do not understand your question. They are phylogenetically speaking very far apart. The only thing they have in common is that they are ray-finned fishes, just like approx. 30000 other fishes. $\endgroup$ Jun 13, 2017 at 10:29

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The rock cods and the Groupers may look similar, but they belong to different "orders" and "families". Moreover here are the differences I mentioned:

  • ROCK COD

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Actinopterygii

Order: Gadiformes

Family: Moridae

Genus: Lotella

Species: L. rhacina

  • GROUPERS

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Actinopterygii

Order: Perciformes

Family: Serranidae

I have strong-texted the two differences. You also wrote that besides they look very similar, the Grouper family is slightly bigger in size than the cods. Well, you observation is correct, because the groupers are closely related with sea basses. In fact, sea basses are included to the same family like groupers: The Serranidae. The enlarged size of the groupers is because they have a degree of relativity with basses that as wikipedia says: Bass is a name shared by many species of fish. The term encompasses both freshwater and marine species, all belonging to the large order Perciformes, or perch-like fishes.

This justifies the size and big body weights we notice to the family serranids, like the common grouper.

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    $\begingroup$ This answer is adequate as it stands but could be made stronger by adding a simple phylogenetic tree and possibly a summary of key ecological niche differences. $\endgroup$
    – arboviral
    Jun 13, 2017 at 18:23

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