African Hind, also known as Bluespotted Sea Bass or Spotted Grouper, is a type of fish related to anthias and sea basses.
It can be found in the eastern Atlantic Ocean, living on both sandy and rocky ocean floors.
This fish is sometimes sold in the aquarium trade and caught by local fishers. However, it’s not safe for reef tanks.
This species has a unique reproductive cycle where it starts as a female and later becomes male.
You can check out what this fish looks like over here.
African Hind Interesting Facts
- African hind starts as female and later becomes male.
- This fish thrives in the eastern Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea, at depths of 20-200 meters.
- Their physical characteristics include a smaller body depth compared to the head length and a preopercle that is rounded with fine serrations.
- Diandric species: two types of males may exist within the population.
African Hind Habitat
African hind lives in the eastern Atlantic Ocean, from Western Sahara to Angola, and includes Cape Verde and the islands of Sao Tome and Principe.
You can also find it in the Mediterranean Sea. This fish prefers a depth range of 20 to 200 meters and is found near the ocean floor.
It thrives in tropical waters between 33°N to 13°S latitude and 27°W to 15°E longitude.
African Hind Physical Characteristics
Size: 15.7 inches (40.0 centimeters)
The maximum length of African hind fish is about 70 cm (27.6 inches), with a common length around 40 cm (15.7 inches).
It typically reaches maturity at 18 cm (7.1 inches) in length, but the full range of sizes is unknown.
This fish has 9 dorsal spines and 15 to 16 dorsal soft rays. It also has 3 anal spines and 9 to 10 anal soft rays.
Some unique features of this fish include a body depth smaller than its head length, giving it a ratio of 2.8 to 3.2 times its standard length (SL).
Its head length is about 2.7 to 3 times its SL. The area between the eyes is curved, and it has a rounded preopercle (bone near the gills) with fine serrations and a shallow notch.
Its subopercle and interopercle bones have small serrations covered by skin.
The maxilla (upper jaw) extends to or beyond the rear edge of the eye.
African hind’s pectoral fins are longer than its pelvic fins, with lengths equaling about 1.5 to 1.7 times its head length (HL).
Its pelvic fins almost reach its anus, while its caudal (tail) fin is rounded. This fish also has ctenoid scales on its body but no auxiliary scales.
African Hind Reproduction
African hind has a unique reproductive system where it starts as a female and later becomes male.
These fish are pelagic spawners, meaning they release eggs into open water.
There are fewer males in the population because they mate with multiple females (polygamy).
According to one study, some male African hind fish may not go through a female stage like most fish do.
Instead, they may develop directly from immature females, supporting Shapiro’s 1987 hypothesis.
This makes them diandric – meaning they have two types of males in their population.