Dictionary of Fish : Fish Directory - reference guide to Mangrove Snapper
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Facts about Mangrove Snapper
Gulfwide. Juveniles under 12 inches long are common in saline coastal lakes and bays. Larger fish are in offshore waters up to 200 feet deep, with the largest fish being farthest offshore. Small fish inshore are often found on open bottoms. Offshore, they show a strong attraction to obstructions - rocks, reefs, wrecks, and offshore oil & gas platforms.
The upper body color of this fish is gray to gray-green with strong reddish to brick-reddish overtones. The belly is lighter in color. Faint vertical bars may also be visible on the sides. It most closely resembles the cubera snapper, see which for differentiation tips. Gray snappers grow rapidly the first 6 to 7 years of their life, reaching 11 inches by age 2 and 21 inches by age 8. They can live to 25 years and reach 30 inches in length. Gray snappers typically mature at age 2 or 3. Spawning takes place at dusk during the full moons of June, July, and August. They feed most heavily in late afternoon or night, leaving their reef habitats to forage on nearby open bottoms. Gray snappers are known for their cunning in avoiding a baited hook or spear fisherman. Usually after a few are hooked or speared, the others on a site will give hooks or divers wide berth.
Commonly found at 1 to 6 pounds, they can grow to over 10 pounds, occasionally even larger.
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