Shorefishes of the Eastern Pacific online information system

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Species: Lutjanus novemfasciatus, Pacific cubera snapper, Pacific dog snapper

All Families:   All Genera:   All Species:

grey-brown + 8-9 dark bars
above LL: scale rows oblique
roof mouth - tooth patch a crescent
tongue - at least 1 patch granular teeth
A: rounded, 7-8

Lutjanus novemfasciatus Gill, 1862

Pacific Dog Snapper, Pacific Cubera Snapper

Body oblong, snout pointed; front and rear nostrils simple holes; mouth relatively large and protractile; teeth conical to caniniform, those at front of jaws generally enlarged and fang-like; tooth patch at central roof of mouth crescent shaped, without rear extension; sides of roof of mouth with 1 tooth patch; 16-17 gill rakers; preopercle serrated, lower margin notched; dorsal rays X, 14, dorsal continuous; anal rays III, 7-8; soft dorsal and anal with rounded ends; tail with straight edge; bases of soft dorsal and anal fins scaly; scale rows on upper back rising obliquely above lateral line.

Dark olive brown to copper red on back and sides, becoming silvery white on lower sides; juveniles and adults with 8-9 dusky brownish bars on upper half, these sometimes obscure in large fish, which have dark fins.

Size: attains about 170 cm and 45 Kg.

Inhabits rocky reefs, usually in or near shelter during the day; feeds largely on crustaceans and fishes at night; depth range about 4-35 m; adults can penetrate as much as 20 Km up rivers.

Depth: 2-60 m.

Southern California to the Gulf of California to Peru, Galapagos, Cocos and Malpelo.

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  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Brackish
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Reef and soft bottom
  • Rocks
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Mangrove
  • Reef (rock/coral/oyster)
  • Estuary
  • Freshwater
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
  • Bony fishes
  • Data
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
Egg Type
  • Pelagic
  • No data
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • All species
  • East Pacific endemic
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
Regional Endemism
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • TEP endemic
  • All species
  • Continent
  • Island (s)
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Northern Subtropical (Cortez Province + Sinaloan Gap)
  • Northern Tropical (Mexican Province to Nicaragua + Revillagigedos)
  • North Temperate (Californian Province &/or Northern Gulf of California)
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
IUCN Red List
  • Listed
  • Least concern
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 170
Depth Range Min
  • 2
Depth Range Max
  • 60