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Mutton Snapper

Lutjanus analis

Snapper Family

Saltwater Fish Identification

Mutton Snapper

Common Name(s):
Muttonfish, Reef King, Pargo
The Mutton Snapper and the Lane Snapper are often confused, both have similar coloration but a closer look will reveal that the Lane Snapper has yellow streaks or horizontal stripes on the body, whereas the Mutton Snapper has small, oblique, blue streaks on a yellowish background. Also, the anal fin and rear edge of the dorsal fin of the Lane Snapper are not sharply pointed but appear to be squarish or even rounded. Also tooth patch in the roof of the mouth has no median extension and resembles a crescent rather than an anchor shape. Large Mutton Snappers take on a reddish coloration and are often mistaken for Red Snappers.
Similar Fish:
Lane Snapper
Feeding Habits:
The Mutton feed on shrimp, snails, and crabs.
The Mutton Snapper is one of the most common snappers from Florida to South America. Occasionally, it reaches as far north as Massachusetts and as far south as southeastern Brazil. On the Atlantic Coast of Florida, Muttons are common on the reefs as far
Juveniles inhabit inshore grass beds, coral patches and channels. Adults are primarily inhabitants of the deeper reefs, although many are found in near shore deep channels and passes of South Florida, the Keys and the Bahamas.
Typical Size:
Mutton Snappers caught inshore average 1-2 pounds. On reefs and in deeper water, the average is 5 pounds or more, with individuals up to 15 pounds not uncommon. Maximum is probably around 35 pounds.
World Record:
30 pounds, 4 ounces (IGFA)