Pristipomoides macrophthalmus

Common Name

Cardinal Snapper

Year Described

Müller & Troschel, 1848


Dorsal Fin: X, 11
Anal Fin: III, 8
Pectoral Fin: 15-16
Gill Rakers: 6-8 upper, 13-17 lower; 19-25 total
Lateral Line Scales: 54-57

Body moderately deep and compressed. Interorbital region flat. Upper and lower jaws with a row of teeth. Anterior teeth enlarged. Vomerine teeth in a chevron-shaped patch. Palatine teeth an elongate band. Ectopterygoid teeth absent. Soft dorsal and anal fins without scales. Maxilla scaleless. No distinct notch between spiny and soft dorsal fins. Last dorsal ray longer than one anterior to it. Caudal fin forked.


Body pink to red dorsally, becoming silvery-pink on the flanks and white on the belly. Dorsal and caudal fins pink. Other fins pale.


Maximum size to 37cm TL. Commonly to 20cm TL.


Deep continental shelf waters (110-550m) over hard bottoms.


Scattered records from the Florida Straits to Puerto Rico, the SW Caribbean, and Bermuda.


Anderson, W.D. 2002. Lutjanidae (pp. 1479-1504). In: Carpenter. 2002. The living marine resources of the Western Central Atlantic. Vol. 3: Bony fishes part 2 (Opistognathidae to Molidae). FAO Species Identification Guides for Fisheries Purposes. American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists Special Publication No. 5. FAO of the U.N., Rome.