Close this search box.

Best Bait for Mangrove Snapper According to Experts

They are known to form medium-sized schools, so when they are around, you can catch many in a short period of time. They are highly sought after by recreational fishermen for their delicious and flaky flesh. So what is the best bait for a Mangrove Snapper?

The short answer is that Mangrove Snapper aren’t fussy and will feed on a wide variety of fish and crustaceans. This results in them being extremely easy to target.

Want to learn more? We’ll go over our top choices for the best bait for Mangrove Snapper as well as how to catch them below. Let’s get to it!

Our First Choice: Use Live Bait

One of the best ways to target mangrove snapper is to use live bait. When using live bait, Grunts, Squid, Pinfish, Pilchards, Mullet, Shrimp, Ballyhoo, and Cigar Minnows are all proven to catch Mangrove Snapper consistently.

When fishing with dead bait, frozen Sardine, frozen Cigar Minnow, and frozen Grunts are the best baits to use. You should use the same bait you use for Cubera Snapper and Pink Snapper.

Dead Bait Recipes for Mangrove Snapper

Plastic fishing lure

The best bait recipe is a combination of fresh Sardine. Frozen Grunts wrapped up in Squid. Slice a piece of Squid into a 1′ x 3″ rectangle, and tenderize thoroughly with a tenderizing mallet. Place thin slices of fresh Sardine and Grubs on the Squid piece and roll up into a crayon-shaped bait.

Using fishing cotton, tie this bait closed and then tie it to your hook. The tenderized Squid will release oils, and the Sardine will release a wonderful smell to attract big Snapper.

Best Rig for Mangrove Snapper

When constructing a Mangrove Snapper Rig, the Classic Sliding Sinker Rig should or Fish Finder Rig be your rig of choice. When fished correctly, this rig is by far the most effective rig around to target Mangrove Snapper.

You will need a 50lb swivel, the smallest weight possible that will hold your bait on the bottom, and a medium-sized hook that will allow you to pull quite hard.

Best Rods for Mangrove Snapper

KastKing Crixus Fishing Rod

This all-around rod from KastKing is extremely versatile and can be used to target Mangrove Snapper and a wide range of salt and freshwater species. It delivers incredible performance at an entry-level price. This sensitive and powerful creation is made from IM6 Graphite, ranges in power from a lightweight to heavy-duty, and features KastFlex technology.

Kastking Crixus fishing Rods feature comfortable and durable SuperPolymer handles and offer exceptional slip resistance and maximum control. It also features a slit rear handle and is finished with an EVA fighting butt. This rod comes standard with stainless steel guides, with Zirconium Oxide Rings. These innovative rings deliver smooth long casts regardless of what type of line you are fishing.

KastKing have a substantial range of Crixus fishing rods with 20m different lengths, action, and power combinations. All rods feature a two-piece design for easy storage and transport. With PTS (Power Transition System) technology, they feel and perform as good as a one-piece design. It’s also a great choice for Mutton Snapper.

Best Reels for Mangrove Snapper

Lew’s Wally Marshall Speed Shooter 100 Spinning Reel

This quality Lew’s Wally Marshall Speed Shooter 100 Spinning Reel is loaded with features and is ideal for targeting Mangrove Snapper. The Gearbox has a thin and compact design. The graphite body is lightweight with a Skeletal Rotor Design. The quality 4-Bearing System comes with an anti-reverse, one-way clutch bearing. It also features a Double Anodized Ported Aluminum Spool with an ambidextrous hand orientation.

SHIMANO Sahara Rear Drag Spinning Fishing Reel

This gorgeous reel from Shimano is one of the most popular light-action spinning reels on the market. It features a rear drag, a gear ratio of 5.2:1, weighs 9 ounces with a reversible retrieve. The maximum drag force is 4.4lb with a line retrieval of 27 in per crank.

This quality reel also features three stainless steel ball bearings plus an additional roller bearing. Monoline capacity (lbs/yards): 2/270, 4/160, 6/110)

Best Fishing Line for Mangrove Snapper

Rikimaru FC 100% Fluorocarbon Shock Resistant Line

Rikimaru manufactures some of the best Shock Resistant Leaders around. This line offers a breaking strain of between 2-150lb,

WEAVERBIRD Monofilament Fishing Line

The WEAVERBIRD 2-piece Mono-Filament Fishing line is a great choice when fishing for Mangrove Snapper. The line is strong and durable yet soft and ultra-thin. It is manufactured from premium nylon results in absolutely no stretching. This line is virtually invisible to fish. This is because it offers an almost identical light-reflective index to water.

Mangrove Snappers have excellent eyesight, so this line is ideal. It offers amazing strength, which allows for sudden and aggressive strikes. It also offers excellent abrasion resistance, delivers outstanding hook-sets and great knot strength for maximum long-casting abilities.

XCELINE Super Strong Braided Fishing Line

If you enjoy fishing with braided lines, then the XCELINE Super Strong Braided Fishing Line is perfect for you. It is weaved from super strong PE fiber, resulting in exceptional knot strength, a thin diameter, zero stretch, and low line memory.

XCELINE Braided Line features enhanced coating technology for more durable use with greater abrasion resistance for extreme fishing conditions. Braided Fishing Line offers sensitivity like no other and offers excellent long-casting capabilities.

What are Mangrove Snapper?

The Mangrove Snapper (Lutjanus Griseus) is also known as a Gray Snapper. They have the ability to habitat most environments, including fresh and brackish water. The can be located in the western Atlantic Ocean, from Brazil all the way up to Massachusetts. They can also be found in Bermuda, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea.

The Mangrove Snapper is typically reddish-gray in color and has the ability to morph into a stunning bright copper-red color. This species also features a prominent dark stripe that runs across the eye. They are often confused with their cousins, the Cubera Snapper and the Black Snapper.

Adult Cubera Snappers are much larger than Mangrove Snapper, but when young (and similar in size), the only telling feature is a difference in the tooth pattern inside the roof of the mouth.

Mangrove Snapper is also often confused with the Dogtooth Tuna. Dogtooth Tuna have a blue band under their eyes, sharp large canine teeth, and also have a lighter triangle of color.

Where do Mangrove Snapper Live?

Bait for fishing

The Mangrove Snapper will spend most of its life feeding on crustaceans and various other types of smaller fish.

They are opportunistic predators and have evolved into intelligent and systematic hunters. Mangrove Snappers have also been observed waiting under trees in the Bahamas, waiting in the hope of falling Buffy Flower Bats from the colonies above.

Mangrove Snapper can be found in open water, around mangroves, grass flats, canals, bays, and estuaries. They prefer a habitat with reefs or structures, like coral reefs, shipwrecks, docks, and debris.

They can be found at depths of between 5 -180 meters (15-500ft), although the most common depth seems to be around 50m (160ft).

How Large do Mangrove Snapper Grow?

Mangrove Snapper don’t grow that big, but the largest on record is a respectable 44lb (20kg). They will still offer you a decent fight (like all Snapper), so when targeting larger Mangrove Snappers, you really need to be on top of your game.

Author Note: They are dirty fighters and will immediately run hard down towards the bottom, trying to get your snagged or cut off by the reef. Targeting smaller Mangrove Snapper can be loads of fun and a good species to target when introducing youngsters to this amazing sport. 

When is the Best Time of Year to Catch Mangrove Snapper?

The best time of year to target Mangrove Snapper is in the summer months when the conditions are warmer. The best time of day to target this species is at first light and the last few hours leading up to Sunset.

Fishermen can target juveniles throughout the day. Mangrove Snappers, like most Snappers, are also active at night, and this is a great time to target them.


Recreational fishermen target mangrove Snappers for their delicious flaky flesh. This means Mangrove Snapper are great to eat! They don’t get very big, but like all, Snappers will put up a decent fight. We hope you enjoyed this article on the best bait for Mangrove Snapper.

Happy Hunting!


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts