The vermilion snapper is an abundant species of fish found along the North American coast of the Atlantic Ocean from North Carolina to Bermuda and throughout the Gulf of Mexico to Brazil. The vermilion snapper is often sold as red snapper.
Vermilion snapper have streamlined bodies, are pale to silver white below and vermilion above. Narrow yellow-gold streaks, some horizontal and others oblique, occur below the lateral line. The dorsal fin is rosy colored with a yellow margin. The caudal fin is red , but has a faint black margin.
The vermilion snapper is found in tropical waters of the western Atlantic from Cape Hatteras to southeastern Brazil, including Bermuda, the West Indies and the Gulf of Mexico. The preferred habitat is irregular reeflike bottom in waters ranging in depth from 80-350 feet. In some areas, the species is replaced by its close relative, the yellowtail snapper, Ocyurus chrysurus, which occupies the same type of habitat. All vermilion snapper are mature at 2 years of age and 7.9" total length. Multiple spawning is characteristic of the species, taking place from April to September. Vermilion snapper can reach lengths up to 24 inches, feeding on small animals found high in the water column.
Vermilion snapper prefer flat areas on the tops and around the bases of the snapper banks to the banks' steeply sloping sides. They are often found in concert with red and other snappers around structures in the Gulf.
Best bait is fresh squid, although they will also eat crab, shrimp, or other small fish.
Fish close to the bottom offshore near rigs and artificial reefs and around the tops and bottoms of snapper banks. The preferred habitat is irregular reef-like bottom in waters ranging in depth from 80 to 350 feet.
Eat as with other snapper, although the vermilion is not as popular a food source as it's cousin the red snapper.
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