The mutton snapper, Lutjanus analis, is a species of snapper native to the Atlantic coastal waters of the Americas from Massachusetts to southern Brazil, including the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. They are particularly common in the Caribbean.
Anguilla, Antigua Barbuda, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Cayman Is. Cuba CUB, Curaçao I. Dominica, Dominican Rp, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Mexico, Montserrat, Neth Antilles, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, St Kitts Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent Gren. Trinidad Tobago, Turks Caicos Is. USA, Virgin Is. (UK), Virgin Is. (US), Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela,
They inhabit reef environments, with adults found in areas with rock or coral, while juveniles occur in sandy habitats with plentiful weed growth. They can be found at depths of from 25 to 90 m (82 to 295 ft), though most often between 40 and 70 m (130 and 230 ft). Mutton snapper, especially adults, tend to be solitary, but can be seen in smaller schools Adults occur in continental shelf areas as well as clear waters around islands. Large adults usually among rocks and coral while juveniles occur over sandy, vegetated bottoms. They form small aggregations which disband during the night. Feed both day and night.
Dorsal spines: 10-11; Dorsal soft rays: 13-14; Anal spines: 3; Anal soft rays: 7 - 8. Preopercular notch and knob weak. Pectoral fins are long, reaching level of anus. Scale rows on back rising obliquely above lateral line. Back and upper sides olive green, whitish with a red tinge on lower sides and belly. A black spot is on the upper back just above the lateral line and below the anterior dorsal fin rays. A pair of blue stripes runs on the snout-cheek region, the upper continuing behind eye to upper edge of gill. This species can reach a length of 94 cm (37 in).
Starfish, Eels, bony fish, crabs, Lumpy/Smooth Box crab, New Zealand half crab, Blue swimming crab, Ocellate Swimming Crab, Surgeon fish, Porcupine fish, Cornet fish, Grunts, Squirrel fish, Sardines, Sand Tile fish, File fish, Goat fish, Parrot fish, Scorpion fish, Lionfish, Squid, Cuttlefish, Breams and Porgies.
Method of catching
They can be caught on a variety of baits, but are most commonly caught on live or frozen shrimp, whole or cut squid, minnows, and smaller bait fish (such as live or dead pinfish). Mutton snapper have been caught on artificial baits, but seem to prefer live bait.
Their flesh is considered by most as excellent table fare. Like most of the snapper family, the meat is white, flaky, and light, and is excellent prepared in a variety of ways.
Only three records have been made on spawning season , In Cuba they spawn from March to September, Northeastern Caribbean during February and Northeastern Venezuela from May to October.