Red Bass, Lutjanus bohar (Forsskål 1775)

Other Names: Bohar Snapper, Kelp Bream, Kelp Sea Perch, Kelp Sea-perch, Twospot Red Snapper, Two-spot Red Snapper

A Red Bass, Lutjanus bohar, at Beqa lagoon, Fiji. Source: Sarah Speight / Flickr. License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike

A large reddish tropical snapper with darker fin, a deep groove or pit running from the nostrils to the front of the eye, and the scale rows on the back rising obliquely above lateral line. 

Small juveniles are brownish with two silvery-white spots on back. They mimic damselfishes of the genus Chromis, allowing the young Red Bass to approach potential prey. Large fish are known to cause ciguatera poisoning.

Video of a spawning aggregation of Red Bass
Underwater footage of a Red Bass in the Red Sea.

Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J. 2020, Lutjanus bohar in Fishes of Australia, accessed 21 Apr 2024,

Red Bass, Lutjanus bohar (Forsskål 1775)

More Info


Shark Bay and offshore reefs, Western Australia, and Ashmore Reef in the Timor Sea, to the Timor Sea NNW of Darwin, Northern Territory, and the northern Great Barrier Reef, Queensland, to Nambucca Heads, New South Wales, with juveniles south to at least Sydney; also Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands in the eastern Indian Ocean, and the Lord Howe Province in the Tasman Sea. Elsewhere, the species is widespread in the tropical, Indo-west-central Pacific at depths ranging from 10 to at least 70 m, possibly to 180 m

Adults inhabit coral reefs, in sheltered lagoons and on outer reef slopes. They are usually found singly, often adjacent to steep outer reef slopes, but occasionally occur in groups.


Feeds mostly on fishes, and also preys on crustaceans and cephalopod molluscs.


A very long-lived, slow growing species that does not become reproductively mature until 8-9 years of age. Males and females form large spawning aggregations. Otolith aging studies from fish collected at Rowley Shoals, Western Australia, found that individuals may live to at least 79 years of age.


An important marketfish in many areas, and also important to subsistence fisheries. The species is also sold in the live fish trade.


Large individuals from oceanic areas in the western Pacific often carry ciguatera toxins.


The specific name bohar is the Arabic name for this species around the Red Sea.

Species Citation

Sciaena bohar Forsskål, 1775, Descriptiones animalium: 46. Type locality: Arabia.


Bray, D.J. 2020


Atlas of Living Australia

Red Bass, Lutjanus bohar (Forsskål 1775)


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Quick Facts

CAAB Code:37346029

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:4-180 m

Fishing:Commercial, recreational fish

Habitat:Reef associated

Max Size:90 cm TL

Species Maps

CAAB distribution map