The Snapper family (Lutjanidae) comprises mostly marine species, although there are 3 species (Lutjanus fuscescens, L. goldiei y L. maxweberi) that inhabit fresh water and/or estuaries. Juveniles of various species are capable of entering brackish and freshwater estuaries on a temporary basis. They are distributed throughout tropical and subtropical waters of the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans, generally being found near the sea floor from surface waters to depths of 550 meters. The body of the Snappers can reach a maximum length of 1 meter. They have a terminal mouth with a size between moderate and large. The mouth has a multitude of large canine teeth in its jaws.
The dorsal fin of Snappers is continuous, may be slightly serrated, and has 9-12 spines followed by 9-18 soft spokes. The anal fin is formed by 3 spines and then we find 7-11 spokes. The pelvic fins are usually inserted in a plane just behind the base of the pectoral fins.
Snappers are a very important fish species as food for humans. There have been cases of ciguatera, a poisoning disease characteristic of some tropical fish species. This disease is due to the toxins caused by certain dinoflagellates that are ingested by the fish along with their usual food. They are predatory species, which feed on Crustaceans and fish, although there are certain species that feed on Algae. At present, there are 110 species of Snappers, all grouped into 4 subfamilies and 17 genera.