More on author: Linnaeus. Records from Brazil are based on misidentifications Ref. Records from the eastern Atlantic are vagrants Ref. Dorsal profile of head slightly concave, snout long and pointed.
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Species: griseus Common Names Common names in the English language include gray snapper, gray silk, mangrove snapper, mangrove pargue, mango snapper, pargue , black pargue, black snapper, lawyer, silk, and snapper. Other common names are caballerote Spanish , caranha Portuguese , caranjitu Papiamento , carde gris French , castanhola Portuguese , grijze zeebars Dutch , luciano Portuguese , lujan trujacy Polish , lutianido Italian , napsija Finnish , nezumifuedai Japanese , pagre French , pargo Spanish , pargo de mangel Spanish , pargo denton Spanish , pargo manglero Spanish , pargo prieto Spanish , parguette French , sarde grise Creole , schnapper German , sinagrida Greek , tarumi feudai Japanese , vivaneau sarde grise French.
Importance to Humans Gray snapper. Although the species is fished commercially it is sought largely as a seasonal supplement to other fisheries. These fish are caught with beach seines, gill nets, traps, angling gear, handlines, and spears.
Shrimp trawlers account for a large portion of the fishing mortality of this snapper, as the soft bottom habitats preferred by juvenile gray snappers also support large populations of shrimp. This fish has been successfully reared in aquaculture and is also exhibited in commercial aquariums. As with many other tropical predatory reef fishes, ciguatera poisoning as a result of consuming this species has been documented. Such instances however, are rare.
The IUCN is a global union of states, governmental agencies, and non-governmental organizations in a partnership that assesses the conservation status of species. It is especially abundant around the coastline of Florida. Habitat Gray snappers reside in coastal as well as offshore waters from very shallow areas to depths of m feet.
Large aggregations of this snapper are frequently observed amongst coral reefs, rocky areas, estuaries, and mangrove habitats. Adults of the species tend to remain in the same area for long periods once established and tagging studies have shown little movement for periods of time as great as 4 years.
However, within such a range the species exhibits daily activity patterns associated with nocturnal feeding and diurnal schooling. Young gray snapper live inshore in areas such as seagrass beds as well as soft and sand-bottom areas but may be found in a variety of habitats and a number of inshore habitats are important nurseries for this species.
Both adults and juveniles have been found in freshwater lakes and rivers in south Florida, a clear indication that the species is tolerant of a broad range of salinity levels. Biology Gray snapper. The anal fin is rounded and the pectoral fins short, not reaching the anal fin.
Young cubera snapper Lutjanus cyanopterus may be easily confused with gray snapper and careful comparison of the vomerine teeth found on the roof of the mouth of either species is the most reliable means of discerning the two. Adult cuberas however, are among the very largest of snapper species, obtaining lengths as great as 5 feet 1. Male and female gray snapper are externally indiscernible. Gray snapper. Evident on the sides of the fish are rows of small reddish to orange spots.
The median fins are darker than the paired fins, often edged with yellow or white and the pectoral fins are colorless. The back edge of the anal fin is rounded. There is no black spot on the side of body. Young gray snappers have a prominent dark stripe from the snout through the eye and a less conspicuous blue stripe on the cheek, below the eye.
They may also at times show a lateral pattern of narrow pale bars on the body. The fins of juveniles are reddish-orange with dark edges. Dentition Both jaws have a narrow band of villiform fine, densely packed hair-like teeth, while the upper jaw contains four strong canine teeth, two of which are enlarged and easy to see.
Size, Age, and Growth The gray snapper is one of the smaller snappers, rarely exceeding 18 inches 45 cm in length, and is almost always less than 10 pounds. Maximum size is 24 inches and 10lbs. Sexual maturity is obtained after about 2 years of age, at lengths of inches cm and the estimated maximum age for this snapper is 25 years. Gray snapper residing near a wreck. Larvae feed on zooplankton including copepods and amphipods. Juvenile gray snappers feed by day among seagrass beds, mainly on crustaceans and fish and to a lesser degree polychaete worms and molluscs.
Foraging nocturnally, adult gray snapper prey upon small fishes, shrimps, crabs, gastropods, and cephalopods. Reproduction Spawning occurs from April to November with a peak during the summer months, and is influenced by the lunar cycle.
Individual snappers may spawn multiple times during the course of the reproductive season. Gray snapper spawn in aggregations during the times surrounding the full moon. The species is a broadcast spawner of demersal eggs from which hatch sparsely pigmented larvae approximately 20 hours post-fertilization.
The yolk sac is absorbed within the first 45 hours, after which the larvae must actively feed amongst the plankton. Although little is known about larval snappers in general, most appear to be planktonic at lengths less than 10mm.
The post-larval gray snapper typically settle into suitable estuarine habitats such as seagrass beds and mangroves, although they are known from a variety of habitats. Estuarine nursery areas offer rich sources of food as well as protection from predators.
The pre-juvenile and juvenile snapper feed by day until they achieve a size of approximately 80mm around which time they move into shallow rocky areas and the coastal reefs where they are commonly found as adults. Predators Natural predators of all life stages of this snapper are numerous and include sharks, barracuda , grouper, moray eels and other snapper species. The particular species of trematode that parasitizes any given fish is dependent a number of factors.
Of particular importance are the habitat and prey of the fish, even migratory responses of the host to cold water. The following species are recorded trematode parasites of gray snappers: Metadena adglobosa, Metadena globosa, Metadena obscura, Paracryptogonimus neoamericanus, Hamacreadium mutabile, Hamacreadium gulella, Helicometrina nimia, Helicometrina exacta, and Stephanostomum casum. The copepod Caligus bonito, found on the body surface and on the wall of the branchial cavity, also parasitizes the gray snapper.
Taxonomy Lutjanus griseus, the gray snapper, was described by Linnaeus in The species name is Latin, translated as gray.
Description[ edit ] Its color is typically greyish red, but it can change color from bright red to copper red. It has a dark stripe running across its eye if observed from the top when it is under water. Mangrove snapper are typically much smaller than Cubera, but when they are of similar size, the two species can only be distinguished by examining the tooth patch on the inside roof of the mouth. Many specimens caught in Florida, specifically Punta Gorda , are actually misidentified dogtooth or dog snapper , Lutjanus jocu. The best way to distinguish between the two species is dog snapper has a lighter triangle of color with a blue band under the eye and large, sharp fangs in the front canines , hence its common name. These fangs can deliver a painful bite, even in a small fish.