Chequered snapperLJD

 
Lutjanus decussatus
22.3 cm TL

Characteristic features:

  • longitudinal scale rows above lateral line obliquely positioned
  • Vomerine tooth patch lacking posterior extension
  • Preopercular notch indistinct

Colour:

Pale with dark brownish bars and stripes; a large black spot on caudal-fin base.

Size:

Up to 30 cm TL.

Distribution:

East Indian and West Pacific in tropical waters.

Habitat:

Coral reefs, from 5 to at least 35 m depth.

Biology:

Feeds on small fishes and crustaceans. Chequered snapper are usually solitary but occasionally form schools. Size and age of maturity is estimated at 18.5 cm and 4 years respectively (DeGraaf, 1977 in Martinez-Andrade, 2003)1. In waters off Okinawa, lunar-synchronised spawning has been observed to occur between June and October, within the last quarter moon of each month2. Maximum age estimates is 16 years1.

Fisheries:

Caught mainly with handlines, traps, and gill nets.

Similar species:

A distinct species due to its unique chequerboard colouration. Not likely to be confused with other Lutjanus species.

External links:

FishBase
The IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM

References:

  1. 1.
    Martinez-Andrade F. A comparison of life histories and ecological aspects among snappers (Pisces: Lutjanidae). 2003.
  2. 2.
    Nanami A, Okuzawa K, Yamada H, Suzuki N, Aonuma Y. Reproductive activity in the checkered snapper, Lutjanus decussatus, off Ishigaki Island, Okinawa. Ichthyological research. 2010;57(3):314–8.