Snapper

Maori name: tāmure
Scientific name: Pagrus auratus
Availability: Year round, but mainly from October to April
Weight: 1–2.5kg, up to 19kg
Length: 30–50cm, reaching 100cm

Snapper

Maori name: tāmure
Scientific name: Pagrus auratus
Availability: Year round, but mainly from October to April
Weight: 1–2.5kg, up to 19kg
Length: 30–50cm, reaching 100cm
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Location

They are most common around the North Island and upper South Island, especially in Tasman Bay. The species is one of the largest and most valuable coastal fisheries. Snapper extend over a wide variety of habitats, including reefs as well as sand and mud bottoms. Juveniles range over large areas in water five to 50 metres deep. Adults are uncommon at depths of more than 100 metres. They group-spawn several times in spring and summer. The young live inshore in summer, in shallow, sheltered habitats, but move offshore in winter. This movement continues throughout their life. Snapper are slow-growing, long-lived (up to 60 years), and migratory.

Attributes

Golden-pink to tones of red above, flecked with blue spots, with the colour paling to white on the belly. Snapper found in muddy harbours tend to be pale pink. Snapper found near reefs and weed tend to be a red bronze. Snapper have a large head, strong teeth, and moderately firm scales.

Family

Snapper are members of the Sparidae family (seabreams, snappers).

Sustainability

Snapper is managed under the Quota Management System (QMS). Snapper abundance is monitored using commercial catch rates, catch-at-age sampling, trawl survey information and abundance estimates from the recapture of tagged fish. Most of our snapper stocks are stable or increasing.

A rapid increase in Snapper numbers at the top and West Coast of the South Island led the Minister for Primary Industries to announce in September 2016 a significant increase in the catch limit for Snapper in that area , with recreational catch increasing from 90 to 250 tonnes and commercial from 200 to 250 tonnes.

Fishing methods

Snapper are caught all year, but mainly from October to March/April, off both the east and west coasts of the North Island, in Tasman Bay and in Golden Bay. Premium quality fish are caught by longline. Snapper are also caught by trawl or Danish seining.

Nutrition

Snapper is a good source

To quality for a 'good source' claim the food must contain at least 25% of the RDI.
The Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) is considered to be the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97–98 per cent) healthy individuals in a particular life stage and gender group.

of Iodine

Iodine is necessary for the production of thyroid hormones, for normal neurological function and for normal energy metabolism, and it contributes to the growth and development in children

, Phosphorus

Phosphorus is necessary for normal teeth, bone and cell membrane structure and for energy metabolism

, Selenium

Selenium is necessary for normal immune system function and for the production of thyroid hormones and it contributes to the maintenance of hair and nails

, Niacin (vitamin B3)

Niacin (vitamin B3) is necessary for the release of energy from food and for the normal structure and function of skin and mucous membranes, and contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue

, Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is necessary for normal neurological function and it contributes to blood formation, energy metabolism and to the growth and development in children

and Vitamin D

Vitamin D is necessary for normal bone structure and the utilisation of calcium and phosphorus and it contributes to the maintenance of normal teeth

; and a source

To quality for a 'source' claim the food must contain at least 10% of the RDI.
The Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) is considered to be the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97–98 per cent) healthy individuals in a particular life stage and gender group.

of Magnesium

Magnesium is necessary for normal nerve and muscle function and for teeth and bone structure and it contributes to normal energy metabolism

, Potassium

Potassium is necessary for water and electrolyte balance, it contributes to the functioning of the nervous system and normal muscle function; and to the normal growth and development of children

and Thiamin (vitamin B1)

Thiamin (vitamin B1) is necessary for the metabolism of carbohydrates and for normal neurological and cardiac function, and it contributes to the production of energy

.

Seafood is a highly nutritious food and is a great source of protein

Protein is necessary for tissue building and repair, normal growth and development of bone in children and adolescents aged 4 years and over, and contributes to growth and maintenance of muscle mass

. Many species are low in saturated fat and a number of them are a good source of Omega 3

Omega 3 is a group of fatty acids that contribute to heart health

.

Tips

Snapper has tender white-to-pinkish flesh with a sweet, mild flavour and is highly versatile in cooking.

Try poaching it; cooking it on the bbq; baked; in a curry; marinated; smoked; using it in a soup/chowder; or frying snapper.

Buying & Storage Tips

When buying whole snapper, always check the...
EYES: Bright and clear cornea, shiny black pupil
GILLS: Rosy pink pastel coloured gills
SKIN: Bright, with a luminous sheen
When buying snapper fillets, always check the...
FLESH: semi-transparent and glossy

If the fish looks sticky or mushy then it is not fresh.