Speckled snapperLUV

19.8 cm TL

Characteristic features:

  • Lips greatly thickened
  • 15 or 16 dorsal-fin soft rays
  • Body deep
  • Distinct black spot at axil of pectoral fins, within a dark band from dorsal-fin origin to pectoral-fin base
  • Scales on side brownish with small bluish spots centrally
  • Head with undulating blue lines


Brown with reddish tinge; scales on side brownish with small bluish spots centrally; head with numerous undulating blue-lines; tan lips. A black spot at axil of pectoral fins, within a dark band from dorsal-fin origin to pectoral-fin base; caudal fin with yellow margin; other fins yellowish to dusky grey-brown. Juveniles with 3–8 brown bars on side and white spot with a blackish margin sometimes present below anterior soft dorsal rays at level of lateral line.


Up to 80 cm TL.


Indo-West and Central Pacific in tropical waters.


Adults often found on deep coastal slopes and coral reefs and juveniles on shallow algae reef flats. From the surface to at least 100 m depth.


Feeds primarily on fishes, but also cephalopods and benthic crustaceans. Speckled snapper are usually solitary or forming small groups of 10–15 individuals. This is a slow growing species,1 which reaches maturity at 40.2 cm TL equivalent to 3 years.2 Estimated maximum age is 14 years.2


Caught with handlines, traps, and gill nets, occasionally trawled.

Similar species:

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

External links:

The IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM


  1. 1.
    Mann B, Lee B, Cowley P. Growth rate of speckled snapper Lutjanus rivulatus (Teleostei: Lutjanidae) based on tag-recapture data from the iSimangaliso Wetland Park, South Africa. African journal of marine science [Internet]. 2016;38(1):111–8. Available from: https://doi.org/10.2989/1814232X.2016.1162195
  2. 2.
    Martinez-Andrade F. A comparison of life histories and ecological aspects among snappers (Pisces: Lutjanidae) [Internet]. 2003. Available from: https://digitalcommons.lsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=3270&context=gradschool_dissertations