The gray snapper has a relatively slender body, a large mouth, and a pointed snout. The anal fin is rounded and the pectoral fins short, not reaching the anal fin. Young cubera snapper (Lutjanus cyanopterus) may be easily confused with gray snapper and careful comparison of the vomerine teeth (found on the roof of the mouth) of either species is the most reliable means of discerning the two. Adult cuberas however, are among the very largest of snapper species, obtaining lengths as great as 5 feet (1.5m) and weights of 125lbs (55.5kg) and such specimens are not likely to be confused for gray snapper! Male and female gray snapper are externally indiscernible. Although the general ground color for this species may vary, especially so in the case of juveniles, in general the body and fins of gray snappers are gray to green with a reddish tinge. Evident on the sides of the fish are rows of small reddish to orange spots. The median fins are darker than the paired fins, often edged with yellow or white and the pectoral fins are colorless. The back edge of the anal fin is rounded. There is no black spot on the side of body. Young gray snappers have a prominent dark stripe from the snout through the eye and a less conspicuous blue stripe on the cheek, below the eye. They may also at times show a lateral pattern of narrow pale bars on the body. The fins of juveniles are reddish-orange with dark edges.