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Cubera Snapper

Lutjanus cyanopterus

Snapper Family

Saltwater Fish Identification

Cubera Snapper

Common Name(s):
Cuban Snapper, Cuban Dog, Snapper
Cubera Snappers are silver or steely gray to dark brown on the head, body and fins and occasionally have a reddish tinge. They tend to be darker on their dorsal edge and sometimes have a pinkish, purplish sheen. Most of the young fish and some adults have irregular pale bands on the upper body. The Cubera has thick lips, dark red eyes, and a rounded anal fin. It also has connect dorsal fins that consist of 10 spines and 14 rays and their pectoral fins do not quite reach to the start of the anal fin. The Cubera is often confused with the Gray Snapper and, in fact, oversize Grays (those longer than a couple feet) are almost always confused with sallish Cuberas. To really tell the difference you have to check the patch of vomerine teeth on the inside roof of the mouth. In the Gray, this patch is shaped something like an arrow, complete with shaft. That of the Cubera is of similar shape but has no shaft; it looks like an inverted ā€œvā€. In general, the canine teeth of the Cubera Snapper are enlarged and noticeable even when the mouth is closed.
Similar Fish:
Other snappers
Feeding Habits:
Cubera Snappers feed primarily on fish, shrimp, and crabs.
The Cubera is found throughout the western Atlantic from Florida and Cuba southward to the mouth of the Amazon in Brazil. They are very rare in the Gulf of Mexico and are generally scarce in most of their range.
The Cubera Snapper is typically a deep-water fish residing in waters that are 60 to 200 feet deep. They are usually found offshore in reefs, ledges, and rocky bottoms. Young fish sometimes enter freshwater or inhabit mangrove areas and grass beds. They
Typical Size:
This snapper is common to 40 pounds and over 5 feet in length.
World Record:
121 pounds, 8 ounces (IGFA)