Grouper

Grouper

Red grouper

At a glance

Eco-rating Mercury Omega-3s
+-Red grouper (U.S. Gulf of Mexico)
OK
Elevated

More about Red grouper

The Red grouper, as the name implies, has a reddish-brown body that shades to pink or red along its belly. Usually solitary until spawning time, it grows to 4 feet (1.2 meters) in length and resides along rocky or muddy bottoms in warm waters. This fish may carry red-tide toxin. Adults are overfished and huge numbers of juveniles are killed routinely by shrimp trawlers.

Commercial Sources

Red grouper are found in the western Atlantic, from North Carolina to southern Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico, Bermuda and the Caribbean.

The main sources of red grouper are Brazil and Cuba.

Capture Methods

Red grouper come from marine fisheries, not fish farms. They are primarily caught with hooks-and-lines. Additional types of fishing gear include pots and traps, cast nets, spears and trawls.

+-Black grouper (U.S. Gulf of Mexico)
OK
Elevated

More about Black grouper

The black grouper can grow up to 4 feet (1.2 meters) in length. It is usually solitary and skittish until spawning time, when it gathers en masse. It is found in tropical or subtropical waters of the central western Atlantic.

Commercial Sources

Black grouper are found in the western Atlantic, from Massachusetts and Bermuda to Brazil, including the southern Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean.

Capture Methods

Black grouper come from marine fisheries, not fish farms. They are primarily caught with hooks-and-lines. Additional types of fishing gear include spears, pots and traps.

+-Grouper (imported)
Worst
Elevated

No additional information

Recommended servings per month

Contaminant Men Women Kids 6-12 Kids 0-5
Red grouper (U.S. Gulf of Mexico) Mercury 2 2 1 1
Grouper (imported) Mercury 2 2 1 1
Black grouper (U.S. Gulf of Mexico) Mercury 2 2 1 1
Eco details: 
  • Grouper fisheries are depleted in many parts of the world. One reason is their unusual mating ritual: mature fish come together to spawn in huge numbers that make them easy targets for fishermen. This removes many reproducing fish and challenges the recovery of their populations.
  • Two exceptions are red and black grouper from the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, which are no longer overfished.
  • A new catch share management plan ensures that fishermen stay within their catch limits and minimize bycatch of other depleted grouper species.