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Commonly Asked Questions

Appears in Georgia Aquarium's:
  • Ocean Voyager

Range / Habitat

  • Occurs in the Western Atlantic from Florida to Brazil, including the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea.
  • Found over coral and rocky reefs and drop-offs.
  • Juveniles are abundant in Thalassia - or turtle grass - sea grass beds. 
  • Depth range of about 100 feet (30 m).

Physical Characteristics

  • Has a yellow head and body with narrow horizontal blue stripes along the head and length of its body. It has a blue stripe under the eye that has a distinctive arch. Its dorsal fin is spiny and yellow. 
  • The caudal, or tail, fin is black, which easily distinguishes it from the similar appearing French grunt, whose tail is yellow.
  • Reaches a maximum length of about 18 inches (46 cm). The maximum published weight is 1.7 lbs. (750 g).

Diet / Feeding

  • Diet consists of crustaceans, bivalves and occasionally on small fishes.

Conservation Status

  • “Not Evaluated” on the IUCN Red List. 

Additional Information

  • Congregates in small to midsized schools that are usually found near drop-offs and reefs, which provide structural protection.
  • Schooling behavior is believed to confuse predators, protecting as many fish as possible within the school.
  • Inactive schools seen during the day are taking a rest from the long nights of searching for food.
  • Will hover in mid-water at cleaning stations. Observed opening its mouth to be cleaned by juvenile porkfish.
  • The bluestriped grunt is a frequent thief of damselfish eggs. 

Sources

Reef Fish Behavior. Human, P. and Deloach, N., pgs. 44, 106, 107, 202
Reef Fish Identification. Human, P. and Deloach, N., pg. 92
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