Ryan Photographic - Pinguipedidae - Sandperches


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Family Pinguipedidae

This family contains fish known as the sandperches although in Australia they may be known as grubfish or weever fish and in South Africa as sandsmelt. In New Zealand, where we appear to be taxonomically challenged, one of the species is called the blue cod. More about this species later. Fishbase lists 50 species in 4 genera.

Sandperches are bottom dwellers and this is where they are usually seen, propped up on their pectoral fins. Most species will allow a relatively close approach but a few react to the preflash produced in modern metering systems and may move out of focus before the shot completes.

Some sandperches change sex as they become older. They start off mature life as females and change to males as they become larger. The sexes often have different color patterns, which in turn may differ from juvenile coloration.

The blue cod is divercentric. While diving in parts of New Zealand where spearfishing is rare I have often been accompanied by a curious blue cod. On one occasion I sensed the presence of something and looked to my right to find a blue cod eying up the fish I was photographing - although I expect his intentions were culinary. Blue cod grow to around 50cm and are a popular eating fish.

Sandperches are carnivores.

 

Parapercis clathrata Latticed sandperch

Parapercis clathrata Latticed sandperch

FISH 5034 Parapercis clathrata, Latticed sandperch, Taveuni, Fiji.

Parapercis colias Blue cod

Parapercis colias Blue cod, Fiordland, New Zealand
Parapercis colias Blue cod head shot lateral, Fiordland, New Zealand
Parapercis colias Blue cod whole fish lateral, Fiordland, New Zealand

Parapercis cylindrica Yellowtail sandperch

Parapercis cylindrica Yellowtail sandperch, Raja Ampat, West Papua

FISH 2686 Parapercis cylindrica Yellowtail sandperch, Raja Ampat, West Papua.

Parapercis cylindrica Yellowtail sandperch, Raja Ampat

FISH 9617 Parapercis cylindrica Yellowtail sandperch, Raja Ampat.

Parapercis hexophthalma Speckled sandperch

Parapercis hexophthalma Speckled sandperch, female, Kadavu, Fiji
Parapercis hexophthalma Speckled sandperch, male, Kadavu, Fiji

Parapercis millipunctata Spotted sandperch

Parapercis millipunctata Spotted sandperch Kri Eco, Raja Ampat

FISH 7969 Parapercis millipunctata Spotted sandperch Kri Eco, Raja Ampat.

Parapercis schauinslandi Red-spotted sandperch

Parapercis schauinslandi, Red-spotted sandperch, Kadavu, Fiji
Parapercis schauinslandi Red-spotted sandperch, Kadavu, Fiji

Parapercis snyderi Blackfin sandperch

Parapercis snyderi Blackfin sandperch, Lembeh Straits

FISH 6483 Parapercis snyderi Blackfin sandperch, Lembeh Straits

Parapercis tetracantha Reticulated sandperch

Parapercis tetracantha Reticulated sandperch, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua

FISH 0500 Parapercis tetracantha Reticulated sandperch, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua

Parapercis tetracantha Reticulated sandperch, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua

FISH 1384 Parapercis tetracantha Reticulated sandperch, Kri, Raja Ampat, West Papua

 

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