Redspot Coral Cod (species: Cephalopholis leopardus) in Lizard Island Field Guide (Lizard Island Field Guide)
Cephalopholis leopardus
Redspot Coral Cod

©Nigel Marsh: Cephalopholis leopardus from 10 Ribbon Reef, near Lizard Island. Note dark spot on tail peduncle.
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Order Perciformes
Family Serranidae
Genus Cephalopholis
Species Cephalopholis leopardus
Status least concern



Distinguishing features

A small mottled red/brown grouper with many pink/orange spots which are larger on lower head. A large dark spot on the upper side of tail peduncle.

This species stays hidden within the reef so it not often seen. It has been recorded from the outer reefs near Lizard Island but not yet from the Lizard Island Group itself.


  • Up to 20 cm (length, Allen et al, 2003)

Depth range

  • From 0 m to 35 m (Allen et al, 2003)



©Atlas of Living Australia: Australian distribution

Local abundance

  • Lizard Island: Not yet recorded from the Lizard Island Group. There are numerous records from the outer reef including through explosives sampling in the 1970s. (ALA accessed 2 Dec 2017).

Web resources


References that assist with identification

  • Allen, G., R. Steene, P. Humann and N. Deloach (2003). Reef fish identification: Tropical Pacific New World Publications Inc., Jacksonville, FL, USA.

Other references

  • Pears, R.J. (2005). Comparative demography and assemblage structure of serranid fishes: implications for conservation and fisheries management, Ph.D. thesis, James Cook University. LIRS catalog number 968.