Traceable Species

Toau (Blacktail Snapper)

Blacktail Snapper, Yellow-margined Seaperch, Flametail Snapper

Toau (Blacktail Snapper)

Toau, or blacktail snapper, is named after its dark reddish black tail fringed with white. Their native range is quite extensive, from the Indian Ocean to Southern Japan and Australia. However, the species was introduced to Hawai’i from Tahiti in 1956. In Hawai’I, they are considered an invasive species that competes with native species for food and habitat.

Toau is orange-brown or brownish to pale yellow-white in color. The tail and dorsal fins are dark reddish black. The anal, pectoral, and pelvic fins are yellow. Their scales are yellow with brownish margins. Toau also have a distinct yellow color above the eye. When young, they have four longitudinal blue stripes along their bodies resembling their close cousin, the Bluestripe Snapper. Their low market price means they aren’t heavily targeted by commercial fishermen.

Toau (Blacktail Snapper)

Toau reach sexual maturity between 8 and 10 inches, or  three to four years of age. Adults are estimated to spawn from April to October, around the full moon as well as the last quarter moon. Adults inhabit shallow lagoons to semi-protected coral reefs and prefer deep holes and caves. Adult Toau usually travel by themselves or small schools. As a result, they are not as competitive as their cousin, the Ta‘ape. Because of this, Toau are considered less harmful of an invasive species as the Ta‘ape. They feed predominately at night on small fish such as small goatfish and damselfish as well as invertebrates such as small crab and lobster. 

Food Info Toau (Blacktail Snapper)


  • Color: clear, light pink flesh 
  • Texture: soft and moist flesh
  • Flavor: delicate, mild sweet taste
Species Range
Toau (Blacktail Snapper) range Source:
Blacktail Snapper
Yellow-margined Seaperch
Flametail Snapper
These crabs mate at the time of maturity, which is approximately 3 years of age. Females are smaller than males; this is because the development of reproductive tissues required more energy for females, leaving less energy available for continued body growth. They grow through a process known as molting—regularly shedding their shell and growing a new, larger one. They continue to molt and grow after they have reached sexual maturity. During the breeding season, the crabs leave their borrows in a phenomenon characterized by mass mate-searching events. Once mating/fertilization has occurred, females spawns in the water. The larvae released during the rainy season develop in offshore waters and return to coastal waters five to eight weeks after larval release.
Mangrove crabs are important fishery resources in all Brazilian coast, mainly in the north and northeast where many fishermen depend upon their catch. In addition to its social and economic importance, the mangrove crab is a “keystone” species in ecosystem, they playing an important role in the processes of nutrient cycling and energy transfer.

Fishing Methods

{'fisheries': [<License: Hawaiian Reef Fish by Hook & Line>], 'gear': <Gear: Hook and Line Reef Fishing>}

Hook and Line Reef Fishing

This fishery uses a variety of artisanal methods to catch reef fish, including handlines, and pole and lines. Catch rates are low, usually only a few pounds per hour with little bycatch (discards). These small-scale fishing methods are similar to those traditionally used by native Hawaiians.


Featured Harvester Bernie Berry

Mangrove Crab Harvester

Canavieiras, Brazil

Ahoy there!

Sign up for quarterly updates, news and upcoming exclusive offers.

Name Email