How to Catch Mangrove Snapper

How to Catch Mangrove Snapper | A How-to Guide

Mangrove Snapper, aka Grey Snapper, is one of the most delicious and easily found inshore and estuarine water fish. It is popular among anglers for its tasty meat and fighting capacity. These are easy to catch fish if you can estimate how to get them.

Recently, our team had researched the fish, and gladly, they found the best way to how to catch Mangrove Snapper. We are presenting you with the same. Our guideline will include their life cycle, where, when, and how to get them. We also have included tips to make your angling a fun time.

Mangrove Snapper’s Lifecycle

Mangrove snapper is an inshore fish during its juvenile period. It grows up to 1-2 pounds and 10-14 inches at that time. However, after being matured, they move to offshore water for breeding. An average offshore Snapper grows up to 3-4 pounds. But there are reports that anglers have caught up to 20 pounds weighty Mangrove snapper. However, you got to be lucky to catch those giants.

The Best Locations to Find The Mangrove Snapper

You will discover Mangrove Snapper mostly near wrecks and reefs in the offshore water. However, they are found almost everywhere in the inshore water. Our researchers’ have found the following places most productive to catch these fishes-

  • Deep holes
  • Inlets
  • Bridges and docks
  • Near oyster beds

Mangrove Snapper is a bottom-layered fish. So, you will need to dig your fishing bait dig deep into the water to get the fish. They aren’t found on the surface level.

Mangrove Snapper Fishing Season

Statistics show that Mangrove Snapper is a fish found all the year-round. Yet, the best time to catch these fishes are droning their spawning time. During these days they are found in huge numbers and also tastes more delicious.

The spawning time mainly lasts from June to September of the summer seasons, and you have the opportunities to catch some of the biggest Snappers at this time.

Mangrove Snapper Tackles

Mangrove Snapper is a fast-moving fish. Hence, you need a perfect setup to get your job done. So, you require a configuration of the rod that helps anglers to feel the Snapper bite quickly. Only then, the hook will be ready for the catch. This should be combined with a bait-casting reel or medium-spinning reel.

Bail Casting Tackles

Offshore Mangrove Snappers may grow as weighty as over 10 pounds. Therefore, the regular medium-spinning casts won’t work at the offshore angling. You need to get the bail casting tackles that will disallow the Snappers to pass the structure. In this way, you can easily catch the large ones.

Medium-Spinning Tackles

Inshore and estuarine water Snappers rarely grow over three pounds. So, a medium spinning cast with tested weight anywhere from 8-20 pounds should be comfortable to catch the regular-sized inshore Mangrove Snappers.

Note About The Gear

Mangrove Snappers are famous for their incredible eyesight. So, we recommend you to use a low-visible and tough leader that uses the weight only to reach the deepest level in the water. The fluorocarbon, with its low-visibility and abrasion resistance, is the angler’s favorite gear in this case. However, the line leader should be around 10-20 lbs.

The Use of Live Baits

Commonly, anglers like to choose shrimps as live baits to catch the Mangrove Snappers. However, these are voracious fishes, and the diet changes profoundly from shrimps to all types of fishes. So, they are ready to gallop a wide range of live baits.

The best live baits for them are small mullets and sardines, these fishes have a longer lifespan in captivity and are irresistible for the Snappers. Several other popular live baits include-

  • Live shrimps
  • Small carbs
  • Small pinfish
  • Finger mullet

The Use of Artificial Lures

Mangrove Snapper has an apathy for the artificial lures. Therefore, it is challenging to catch them using artificial lures. Nonetheless, over our research on them, we have found the following lures do their job exceedingly well-

  • Soft plastic jerk baits
  • Imitation lures for Minnow
  • Berkley Gulp Shrimp
  • Curl Tail Grubs

These lures are useful if you are fishing against a current tide. Oh, one more thing, I have already mentioned that Mangrove Snappers have incredible eyesight. So, the lures must resemble the live baits.

The Most Appropriate Technique to Use Live Baits

Although live baits attract the Mangrove Snappers like anything else, you need to know the most suitable technique to get the best out of the live baits. The following instructions should work well-

  • Snappers are ambushers when it comes to prey. So, hold the live baits just above the current structure so that the Snappers come out of its cover.
  • Admittedly, Mangrove Snappers are found in the bottom layer of the water. However, the secret of catching the biggest Snappers is somewhere else. Yes, the most productive areas for Snappers are covered areas near reefs, docks, and bridges. So, put your live baits just above the current in the covered areas.
  • Sometimes Mangrove Snappers hit the baits very lightly. So, you should use a less weighty bait and also reduce the size of your fishing hooks. It helps anglers to understand the Snapper bite fast.

A Note About The Hook

In many areas of the USA, the law enforces fishers to use a Circle Hook to catch fish around reefs. In these cases, we suggest you use a slightly upward motion hook. 

Three Mistakes to Avoid While Catching Mangrove Snappers

Joseph Simonds, a famous fisherman, in his article, stated three mistakes that anglers made while catching the Mangrove Snappers. You should be aware of them and consciously try to avoid also.

  1.  As mentioned already, Mangrove Snappers are extremely fast. It will hit the bait and snap it at once.  So, be ready to crank up as soon as you feel the bite. Otherwise, both your bait and Snapper will be gone.
  2. Use a dual Snell rig with a combination of a thin hook and barbs. This increases hookup rates by 50%.
  3. Never use slow speed reel to catch the Snapper. It is mandatory to use a high-speed spindle if you want to be successful in catching offshore snappers.
How to Catch Mangrove Snapper


Are you ready now to catch your favorite Mangrove Snapper? Before we wrap up, here’s a tip on the personal note. A Snapper BBQ with spice and chili sauce is exceptionally delicious. Next time you catch one using our guideline on how to catch Mangrove Snapper, do try the recipe. You won’t regret it.

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