Rypticus bicolor Valenciennes, 1846
Mottled soapfish
photo by GuimarĂ£es, R. Z. P.

Family:  Serranidae (Sea basses: groupers and fairy basslets), subfamily: Grammistinae
Max. size:  28 cm TL (male/unsexed)
Environment:  reef-associated; marine; depth range 3 - 68 m
Distribution:  Eastern Pacific: Baja California to Peru, including the Galapagos and other offshore islands.
Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 3-3; Dorsal soft rays (total): 23-26; Anal soft rays: 16-18; Vertebrae: 24-24. Sides of body, excluding cheeks, mottled with cream to pale-brown blotches on dark background, reaching onto bases of median fins; blotches are poorly-defined and often coalescing. Body and head, excluding lips and maxillary, with embedded scales. Dorsal spines 3 (rarely 2). Lower jaw projecting, with prominent fleshy protuberance. Numerous, small pores, in patches, along ventral surface of lower jaw and on the free-edge of preopercle in > 6.5 cm SL specimens (Ref. 40934).
Biology:  Lives in rocky reefs, sheltering in caves and crevices but also encountered in the open (Ref. 11482). Lies motionless, often on its side, hidden in dark recesses. Actively hunts at night, preying on small fish (Ref. 5227).
IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern (LC); Date assessed: 01 May 2008 Ref. (123251)
Threat to humans:  harmless
Country info:   

Entered by: Sa-a, Pascualita - 21.11.96

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