Cubera Snapper

Cubera Snapper

Scientific Name

Lutjanus cyanopterus

Stock Status

Overfishing – No

Overfished- Unknown

Regulations

Recreational Commercial
Season Open year-round. If landings reach the stock ACL, harvest will be prohibited for the remainder of the fishing year. Season Open year-round. If landings reach the stock ACL, harvest will be prohibited for the remainder of the fishing year.
Minimum Size Limit 12 inches total length Minimum Size Limit 12 inches total length
Bag Limit Within the 10-snapper aggregate bag limit which includes gray, mutton, yellowtail, cubera, queen, blackfin, wenchman, and silk snappers. Trip Limit none
Permit State issued recreational license/angler registry, federal angler registry or Federal charter/headboat permit for reef fish Permit Commercial vessel permit for reef fish is required.
Gear Non-stainless steel circle hooks are required when fishing with natural baits. At least one dehooking device is required and must be used to remove hooks. Gear Non-stainless steel circle hooks are required when fishing with natural baits. At least one dehooking device is required and must be used to remove hooks.

Harvest Limits

Sector Annual Catch Limit
Stock   5,065 pounds

Description

Cubera snapper, also known as Cuban snapper, inhabit the western Atlantic Ocean from Nova Scotia south to Brazil; however, it tends to frequent tropical waters.  This fish is the largest snapper in its geographical distribution.  Cubera snapper may often be confused with gray (mangrove) snapper because of its similar coloration.  It is dark to pale reddish gray.  This fish tends to have a slenderer body than other snappers.  Juveniles can have pale bars along their sides but these fade with age.  Comparatively little is known about this species of snapper.

 

Maximum observed age:  55 years1

Age at maturity:  ~ 4 to 5 years2

Maximum weight:  125.66 pounds (57 kilograms)3

Maximum length:  63 inches (160.02 centimeters)4

Life History and Distribution

Cubera snapper is rarely seen above Florida and in the Gulf of Mexico.  Adults are solitary reef-associated fish, inhabiting nearshore rocky ledges and overhangs.  To spawn, cubera snapper aggregate over deep water to release their eggs.  Spawning occurs in late summer in the Caribbean.  Eggs are released offshore, and pelagic larvae are carried by currents.  Juveniles shelter from predators in inshore mangrove and seagrass habitats.

References

  1. Burton, Michael & Potts, Jennifer. (2017). Age, growth, & natural mortality of cubera snapper, Lutjanus cyanopterus, from the southeastern United States. Bulletin of Marine Science. 93. 10.5343/bms.2016
  2. Farmer, N.A., Malinowski, R.P., McGovern, M.F. and Rubec, P.J. (2016), Stock Complexes for Fisheries Management in the Gulf of Mexico. Marine and Coastal Fisheries, 8: 177-201. doi:1080/19425120.2015.1024359
  3. Lieske, E. and R. Myers, 1994. Collins Pocket Guide. Coral reef fishes. Indo-Pacific & Caribbean including the Red Sea. Harper Collins Publishers, 400 p.
  4. Allen, G.R., 1985. FAO Species Catalogue. Vol. 6. Snappers of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of lutjanid species known to date. FAO Fish. Synop. 125(6):208 p. Rome: FAO.