Game Fish Identification Reference Guides

Snapper, mullet
(Lutjanus aratus)
(Günther, 1864); LUTJANIDAE FAMILY; also called pargo, parfo colorado, pargo de jilguero, pargo lisa, pargo rayado
Mullet snpper occur in the eastern Pacific from Mexico to Equador, including the offshore islands. This inshore, reef-dwelling species grows to over 33 lb (15 kg). Juveniles are encountered in shallow water of coastal estuaries and embayments; adult mullets snapper range further offshore and may form aggregations consisting of several hundreds of individuals.
This species is easily recognized by the alternating dark and light stripes on the sides formed by parallel rows of scales that have yellowish-white centers. Mullet snapper are generally dark gray-green to reddish on the back and sides with a silvery bellly. Individuals from deeper water are mainly reddish.
Fish are dominant in the diet of this active predatory species. Other common foods include crabs, shrimps, prawns and other crustaceans, cephalopods and gastropods. They are strong fighters and can be taken on natural and artificial lures and flies. Methods of fishing include surf casting, drift fishing, jigging or anchoring to chum. Like most snapper, mullet snappers are considered good eating