Juveniles are found INSHORE on
grassbeds and back reefs. Adults are found NEARSHORE or OFFSHORE over sandy
areas near reefs. The gray snapper's habitat is variable and includes
irregular bottom area offshore, such as coral reefs, rock ledges, and
wrecks, to a depth of about 300 feet. Inshore the species is found over
smooth bottom, usually near pilings, seagrass meadows and mangrove thickets.
Up to15 lb.
Found mainly on tropical
waters. Feeds on small fish and invertebrates. Spawning usually occurs
in the summer at the dusk of a full moon, and in shallow waters. Fish that
are 3 years old or older and 9 inches or more take part in the spawning. The
lifespan of a gray snapper may be up to 21 years and individuals may reach
lengths of 35 inches and weight of 25 pounds. Young gray snappers tend to
each shrimp and other crustaceans, while adults prefer fishes, crabs, or
shrimps, and may feed on grass flats in the late afternoon or at night.