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A compact, brightly coloured and very strong fish, the Red Bream/Snapper grows up to 1m long and over 45lb, but generally in Southern African waters, specimens of 50-80cms and 25-40lb are caught. They are found in South Africa to the north of Port St Johns all the way along and past Mozambique and reach further up the coastline into Eastern Africa and the Red Sea. These Snapper are tropical fish and require warm waters. They prefer reefs, where they can be found anywhere from 2 meters up to 75 meters deep.
This solid-looking Red Bream/Snapper is usually a solitary fish that lives in crevices, holes and caves in the reefs. Crustaceans and small reef dwelling fish make up most of their diet. The males grow way bigger than the females and prey on squid and larger fish.
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This hard-fighting sport fish is often caught on lures and artificial baits such as deep divers and vertical jigs. There has been a real increase in catches in Southern Africa since vertical jigging became popular. They will take poppers and other surface lures and can also be caught on baits fished off the bottom, making them a really diverse sport fish. Live fish baits are also great bottom baits to target this species.