Silk Snapper

Silk Snapper

Silk Snapper

Lutjanus vivanus

AKA:

Silky Snapper, Yellow-Eyed Snapper

Managed by:

SAFMC


Physical description:

The yellow iris identifies the silk snapper from its close relatives, the red snapper and the blackfin snapper, both of which possess a red iris. The blackfin also has a very distinctive black spot at the base of the pectoral fin. Another red-colored snapper, the vermilion snapper, is distinguished by its more streamlined body and deeply forked tail. The body of the silk snapper is red overall, darker above and lighter below with fine wavy longitudinal yellow lines. The caudal fin has a dusky margin.


Biological description:

The species commonly occurs in the western Atlantic from northern South America to North Carolina. It is found in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean as well as around Bermuda. Off Bermuda, the species is common at depths of 400-500 feet during the day, and shallower waters at night. In the Bahamas, it is caught by the Gulf Stream in waters 500-800 feet deep and in the Carolinas in 200-400 feet deep. In studies, the smallest sexually mature silk snappers were a 9-inch female and an 11-inch male. Spawning occurs from late spring through the summer. The silk snapper feeds on crabs, shrimp and fishes.


South Atlantic Federal Regulations

Commercial:

  • OPEN effective January 1, 2017
  • Size Limit: 12-inch total length
  • Trip Limit: None
  • Regulatory Remarks:
    • Part of the Deepwater Complex
    • All species must be landed with head and fins intact.
    • Recreational and commercial fishermen are required to use dehooking tools when fishing for snapper grouper species.
    • The use of non-stainless steel circle hooks (offset or non-offset) is required for all species in the snapper grouper complex when using hook-and-line gear with natural baits in waters North of 28 degrees N. latitude.
    • After the commercial quota is met, all purchase and sale is prohibited and harvest and/or possession is limited to the recreational bag limit. This prohibition does not apply to fish harvested, landed, and sold prior to the quota being reached and held in cold storage by a dealer. Quotas are given in gutted weights.
    • Commercial snapper grouper vessels must have onboard NMFS approved sea turtle release gear and follow smalltooth sawfish release protocol. See the Handling and Release Protocol from NOAA Fisheries or call 727-824-5312.
    • Annual Catch Limit (ACL) – This species is managed under an ACL. See current information on Commercial ACLs (quotas) from NOAA Fisheries.
  • Additional Updates:

Recreational:

  • Open effective January 1, 2017
  • Size Limit 12-inch total length
  • Bag Limit: Included in the Aggregate Snapper Bag Limit of 10 snapper per person/day.
  • Regulatory Remarks:
    • Part of the Deepwater Complex
    • Included in the Aggregate Snapper Bag Limit of 10 snapper per person/day.
    • All species must be landed with head and fins intact.
    • Recreational and commercial fishermen are required to use dehooking tools when fishing for snapper grouper species.
    • The use of non-stainless steel circle hooks (offset or non-offset) is required for all species in the snapper grouper complex when using hook-and-line gear with natural baits in waters North of 28 degrees N. latitude.
    • The sale of bag-limit caught snapper grouper species is prohibited.
    • Annual Catch Limit (ACL) - This species is managed under an ACL. See current information on Recreational ACLs from NOAA Fisheries.
  • Additional Updates: