Do Groupers Attack Humans?

Groupers can attack humans for their defense, but groupers attacking humans is not very common. It means that they can attack if they feel protective of themselves or irritated by any human. Regular-sized groupers usually do not attack humans for their lunch. However, a fully grown Goliath grouper can be enormous, ranging from 300lbs– 800lbs, and can attack and eat humans. A study shows that they usually go after humans if they bother them, or they just cross the path when it is after their prey.

Why Did Grouper Attack?

Groupers are not like sharks; they are calm sea creatures.

    • They usually attack for their defense.

    • Some underwater creature studies show that they attack divers only for their objects. For example, sometimes they misunderstood that the diver’s hands were small fish and tried to move around them.

    • Sometimes they sneak into the divers’ bags, but not in attack mode. They inquire about people sometimes.

    • Large groupers are known for their aggressiveness as they are larger than regular ones, but they never attack for food.

    • They are people who do not know how to behave around large creatures. You need to be alert and keep your distance while watching them. Some divers just become too excited and make the fish angry or irritated with their stupidity and get attacked by them.

    • The attack also depends on the size of the grouper. A 6-foot grouper doesn’t want to eat a 6-foot person. An 18 feet giant grouper will try to try humans, but this size is not common.

What Should You Do if a Grouper Attacks You While Scuba Diving?

Here are some ideas you can apply if you face any attack by grouper–

    • Do not panic. It is a misunderstanding between you and the grouper. Try to be calm because they don’t eat humans normally.

    • First, maintain eye contact and move away from the grouper.

    • They usually do not want to eat humans. They attack when you are in their territory and disturb them.

    • Try to move back in a calm way. I hope you will be fine.

    • If things get nasty, and there is no way that one could be calm, you can poke in the eyes of the groups if you can reach them.

Can a Goliath Grouper Swallow a Person?

No, they cannot swallow a grown person but maybe a toddler size person. Though groupers are reasonable creatures, they can attack humans sometimes. They can’t bite though, they swallow their food. They are huge in size, and that is their main strength, but they are not big enough to swallow a whole human being.

Not all groupers are peace-loving fish. Large-size Groupers named Goliath Groupers are the aggressive kind. They can eat small to medium sharks and humans.

Do Sharks Attack Groupers?

Hammered head shark and other large fishes like –barracuda, moray eels, and king attacks the small-sized Grouper, but the scenario changes when the grouper grows up. They eat sharks, and they are one of the rare predators that eat sharks.

Are Groupers Aggressive?

Groupers are not aggressive. They are not furious creatures. They stay in the deepest part of the sea. When it comes to the upper levels of the sea, they are cordial to people. However, it is recommended to avoid the giant ones, like the Goliath grouper. They can harm you if they want. They can become aggressive if someone were to make them uncomfortable while touching or irritating them.

Grouper mouth

Can Groupers Bite?

Groupers cannot bite. They have five rows of teeth in their lower jaw. They do not use those teeth for chewing. They keep their prey in their mouth with the help of those teeth. They cannot bend or bite their prey. They usually swallow them. They use crushing bony plates in their pharynx to consume the prey.

How Fast Are Groupers?

They are not very fast. They are slow movers, but being slow movers, they can prey on a lot of fish by using their water-sucking technique. Their main hunting strategy is to hide in any dark space in the deep sea. They usually hide for a long time without any movement. When you see their desire for prey, suck them with water. The water pressure is so strong that small sharks also go to their mouth.

Groupers Are Carnivores and Could Eat Humans, but that Chance is Rare

While groupers are carnivores and may eat humans, that chance is rare. As a general rule of thumb, if you don’t touch a grouper with your bare hands or provoke it in any way, you probably won’t end up as dinner for the fish. In fact, experts say that groupers are not aggressive towards humans at all. They’re pretty docile creatures unless provoked by an angler getting too close with his fishing line, and even then, it’s hard to blame the grouper for being territorial.

Groupers aren’t going to attack you—but they may bite if provoked or handled incorrectly. To avoid bites while handling these fish in the wild (or while cleaning them at home), you need to use thick gloves as well as long sleeves and pants made of synthetic fabrics like polyester or nylon rather than cotton. Cotton fibers can get caught between their teeth and cause discomfort or injury if swallowed.

Bottom Line

In the end, we can conclude that groupers are not known to attack humans. However, if you ever encounter one, then it is important to remember that they are meat-eating fish. This means they try to eat smaller fish and crustaceans when they find them. If a human enters their territory, they can also attack and bite.


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