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Schoolmaster

Lutjanus apodus

Appearance

Illustration of a schoolmaster snapper showing important characteristics
  • Body is olive gray or brown with a yellow hue, fading to a lighter belly
  • Fins are yellow
  • Narrow white bars on sides, fading with age
  • Blue stripe below eye, broken in adults
  • Snout long and pointed
  • Canine teeth enlarged in upper jaw, visible when mouth is closed

Similar Species: Dog snapper, L. jocu (has pale triangle below eye) and gray snapper, L. griseus (lack yellow fins and lack blue stripe below eyes) 

Size: Up to 24 inches (8 pounds); and common under 1 pound 

Habitat

Coastal waters. Adults frequent nearshore, especially around elkhorn coral reefs. Large adults are sometimes found on the continental shelf. Juvenile schoolmaster are found in grassy flats. 

Behavior

Spawn in July and August. Feed on crustaceans, small fishes, and gastropods.

Additional Information

State Record: This species is not currently eligible for a state record. 

Recreational Regulations