Distinctive Characters: Dorsal fin with 11 spines and 16-17 rays. Anal fin with 3 spines and 8 rays. Pectoral fin with 17-18 rays. Body depth 2.8-3.2 in standard length. Maxillary reaching a vertical at rear edge of orbit. Preopercle finely serrated. Sides of lower jaw with 2 rows of teeth. Third or fourth dorsal spine longest, longer than the longest dorsal soft ray. Caudal fin rounded. Colour: Brownish or reddish brown. Body and spiny dorsal with numerous small, polygonal brown spots separated by network of pale lines. Darker bands visible on sides. Fins with large dark spots.
Habitat and Biology: Adults occur on coral reefs at depths of 18 to 180 m. Juveniles found on muddy bottoms, seagrass beds and coral reefs to depths of 16 m. Feeds on crustaceans, gastropods and fishes.
Distribution: Indo-West Pacific.
Remarks: Although Epinephelus miliaris has a wide distributional range, it is known from relatively few localities. The specimen on which this report is based constituted the first record from the Maldives. It was caught by longline (depth 200 m) outside Hulhule, during fishing trials conducted by R. V. “Farumas�?, Reef Fishing Project.