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THE NATURAL HISTORY OF CAROLINA, FLORIDA AND THE BAHAMA ISLANDS.
MARK CATESBY
F.R.S. (1683 - 1749)    SECOND EDITION.  LONDON 1754.
VOL ii, PLATE 5.  ENGRAVED BY THE AUTHOR, EDITED AND PUBLISHED BY GEORGE EDWARDS.

THE ROCK FISH

Mark Catesby, The Rock Fish - Perca venenosa (Yellowfin Grouper - Mycteroperca venenosa Lin. Natural History of Carolina, Florida and The Bahama Islands - 1754.Volume II, Plate 5
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THE ROCK FISH - Perca venenosa
Now: PRINCESS ROCKFISH or YELLOWFIN GROUPER - Mycteroperca venenosa Lin.

There is a marked difference in colouration between the print, of which this is typical, and the surviving original watercolour in the Royal Collection which shows a base colouration of a faded bright blue that could never have formerly been dull brown as described in Catesby's text. A highly variable species and so Catesby could have used any colouration he choose and it would still probably have been correct. The expandable pouch below the extended lower jaw is typical of groupers. The tip of the tail, missing in the original prints, has been rebuilt using other parts of the image, it looked absurd without it..

 

IMAGE REF: CAT030

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