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The Carribean red snapper, Lutjanus campechanus, is a light red-colored fish found in schools living in the Gulf of Mexico and the southeastern Atlantic coast of the United States. Gregarious, these fish are found in schools close to the ocean floor on rocky outcrops, ledges, artificial reefs and oil drilling platforms, usually at depths between 30-200 feet. Carribean red snapper is known by many common names including Northern red snapper, American red snapper, and Mexican red snapper; in Latin America it is known as huachinango or pargo. Lutjanus campechanus matures at 2-5 years of age, and can live 50 years or more, reaching 50 pounds in weight. Red snapper are fished commercially and recreationally, and is a popular food fish. The World Conservation Union (IUCN) does not consider red snapper vulnerable in conservation status, though NOAA reports this species is overfished with populations in decline. The shrimp fishing industry has also impacted red snapper populations, as shrimp trawling pulls in a large by-catch of immature red snappers.

(Bester; NOAA 2011; Wikipedia 2011)

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