Shorefishes of the Greater Caribbean online information system

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Species: Heteropriacanthus cruentatus, Atlantic Glasseye Snapper, Glasseye Snapper, Glasseye Snapper Bigeye

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

C & soft D & A: oval dark spots
D: largest spines not at rear
C rounded
mouth opens on body midline
preopercle - large flat spine, rear edge scaleless

Heteropriacanthus cruentatus (Lacepède, 1801)

Glasseye Snapper, Atlantic Glasseye Snapper, Glasseye Snapper Bigeye

Body oval, strongly compressed; head profile nearly symmetrical above and below; a large, upturned, oblique mouth with a projecting lower jaw; tip of lower jaw at level of body midline; no spines on the head; rear of preopercle without scales, with fine ridges, with large flat spine at its angle; gill rakers 21-25; fin spines with tiny spines; dorsal fin X, 12-13, spines not increasing in length towards rear of fin; anal fin III, 13-14; pectoral rays 18-19 (usually 18); pelvics relatively short, < head length, broadly fused to belly; tail fin slightly rounded; scales relatively large, 9-12 rows above lateral line, 63-81 pored scales on lateral line.

Usually pink to red, including fins and iris of eye; tail and soft parts of dorsal and anal fins with elliptical dark specks; can also be silvery with red and pink blotches or irregular bars, or silvery pink with yellowish fins.

Size: reaches 51 cm.

Inhabits shallow reefs.

Depth: 5-432 m.

Trans-Atlantic; New Jersey to Argentina.

Note: The Indo-Pacific sister species is H carolinus.

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  • Marine
  • Marine Only
  • Inshore
  • Inshore Only
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom + water column
  • Mid Water
  • Near Bottom
  • Reef only
  • Rocks
  • Water column
  • Corals
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Planktivore
  • Data
  • Bony fishes
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
  • Pelagic crustacea
Egg Type
  • Data
  • Pelagic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • Greater Caribbean non-endemic
  • Transatlantic (East+West Atlantic)
Regional Endemism
  • Also in Brazil
  • Continent
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • Extends N + S of GC
  • Extends North of GC
  • Extends South of GC
  • GC non-endemic
  • Island (s)
  • All species
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Equatorial (0-10N, Costa Rica / Venezuela)
  • Subtropical (23-35N, Florida / Carolinas / Bermuda)
  • Temperate (>35N)
  • Tropical (10-23N, Nicaragua / Cuba)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 51
Depth Range Min
  • 5
Depth Range Max
  • 432