Malabar Grouper Koh Tao


Learn about the Malabar Grouper Koh Tao

Malabar Groupers on Koh Tao are one of the largest and most commonly seen fish in the local marine environment and one of the most relaxed and docile species around the Coral reef.

Malabar Groupers are seen by scuba divers on almost every dive when visiting the deeper rock pinnacle dive sites.

Large Malabar Grouper Koh Tao
Large Malabar Grouper Koh Tao

Where to find the Malabar Grouper on Koh Tao

Malabar Groupers are wide spread around Koh Tao and can most commonly be found at dive sites such as Sail Rock, Chumphon Pinnacle and Southwest Pinnacle.

How to identify the Malabar Grouper

Malabar Groupers can grow up to 230 cm in size, weigh up to 150 Kg and this colossal size dwarfs the majority of fish, which makes them easier to identify.

Their body has a light greyish, brown color and they have a number of dark brown spots scattered in a random pattern on their bodies.

Older Malabar Groupers have a mixture of brown and grey bands down their bodies, whereas younger Malabar Groupers have a brown coloured body that has not reached full transformation yet.

Malabar Grouper - Marine Life Koh Tao
Malabar Grouper – Marine Life Koh Tao

Malabar Grouper Characteristics & Behaviour

Malabar Groupers, like most of the Grouper species are solitary carnivores and prefer to hunt around dusk near the sea bed and a Malabar Grouper is a heavyweight predator when it comes to hunting.

For such a slow-moving species they have a very fast strike and quickly snap open their huge mouth that causes a powerful suction and the food is drawn into their mouth and everything is swallowed whole.

Malabar Grouper Koh Tao Marine Life
Malabar Grouper Koh Tao Marine Life

Interesting Facts about the Malabar Grouper

A Malabar Grouper is known as a Protogynous Hermaphrodite, which means they are born as females and during their lifespan they change sex to a male.

A fascinating fact about the Malabar Grouper is that it is believed that their reproduction process is synchronised with the lunar phases.

The spots on the Malabar Grouper body increase with their age and this is an easy way to determine their age.