Lutjanus purpureus (Poey, 1866)
Southern red snapper
Lutjanus purpureus
photo by JAMARC

 Family:  Lutjanidae (Snappers), subfamily: Lutjaninae
 Max. size:  100 cm TL (male/unsexed); max.weight: 10,000.0 g; max. reported age: 18 years
 Environment:  demersal; depth range 26 - 340 m
 Distribution:  Western Atlantic: throughout most of the Caribbean Sea from Cuba southward to northeastern Brazil. Frequently confused with Lutjanus campechanus. Also referred to as Lutjanus aya by past authors, but Rivas (Ref. 6409) proved that Bodianus aya Bloch, 1790 is not a lutjanid, but probably a sciaenid.
 Diagnosis:  Dorsal spines (total): 10-10; Dorsal soft rays (total): 14-14; Anal spines: 3-3; Anal soft rays: 8-9. Head short, its dorsal profile somewhat rounded behind eye. Snout short and blunt. Eye large. Preopercular notch and knob weak. Pectoral fins long, reaching level of anus. Scale rows on back rising obliquely above lateral line. Back and upper side deep red; lower sides and belly rosy, with a silvery sheen; the fins mainly red. A small spot is sometimes on the lateral line below the anterior portion of the dorsal fin rays. Young with a rounded black spot on upper side below anterior dorsal soft rays, disappearing with growth.
 Biology:  Adults inhabit rocky areas. They feed mainly on fishes, shrimps, crabs, cephalopods and planktonic items.
 IUCN Red List Status: Not Evaluated  (Ref. 96402)
 Threat to humans:  reports of ciguatera poisoning
 Country info:   

 Entered by: Luna, Susan M. - 17.10.90
 Modified by: Luna, Susan M. - 27.03.13
 Checked by: Torres, Armi G. - 12.02.94

Source and more info: For personal, classroom, and other internal use only. Not for publication.

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