Trigger Happy

via Derek Keats

The triggerfish is a member of the Tetraodontiformes, an order that also includes pufferfish, filefish, and even the ocean sunfish, and is so named for the beak-like “teeth” of its mouth, which are perfect for cracking the shells of crustaceans and mollusks. Residing mainly in coral reef areas, the triggerfish has a distinctive body shape and notoriously bad temperament, especially if it happens to be guarding a clutch of eggs. Many SCUBA divers and snorkelers have experienced the wrath of a triggerfish, who will not hesitate to dart in for a bite, if it feels like there’s a threat to their throne. Their territory extends upward from the seafloor in a cone shape, so if a triggerfish seems like it might be a little feisty, it is best to swim horizontally away, rather than toward the surface. Besides being able to deliver a powerful chomp, the triggerfish poses little threat to humans. Some species of triggerfish harbor dangerous toxins in their skin and organs, so care must be taken if catching one for consumption. The name “triggerfish” comes from another defensive characteristic: two dorsal spines are erected when threatened, the first and tallest of which can only be released by depressing the second spine, much like a trigger on a gun. They can be found in nearly all shallow tropical and subtropical regions of the world, but they are most highly concentrated in the Indo-Pacific. Here are some of the many varieties of triggerfish you’ll encounter on a dive, but be careful to watch that trigger!

via cliff1066™

 

via Derek Keats

 

via petechen

 

via zayzayem

 

via lowjumpingfrog

 

via BBM Explorer

 

via BBM Explorer

 

via brian.gratwicke

 

via brian.gratwicke

 

via OCVA

 

via cookieevans5

 

via JennyHuang

 

via DanTheBeastMan

 

via NOAA Photo Library

 

 

 


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Comments

  1. I prefer the Humuhumunuku-nukuapua ‘a !

  2. A dead one;-P

  3. tasty!

  4. mylichthis niger

  5. Is this really a question? What type of grouper do you like? Or wait what type of minnow do you like?

  6. Picasso

  7. titan triggerfish & a clown trigger =)

  8. Blue line

  9. Blackened on the grill

  10. The clown trigger fish, absolutely! Although I love saying humuhumunukunukuapua’a

  11. nice ….good fish…

  12. Beautiful fish

  13. Niger

  14. Red tooth triggerfish! My fav fish of all!

  15. Adult Sargassum Triggerfish (cuz they look like they are wearing mascara)

  16. Clown Triggerfish (Balistoides conspicillum)

  17. Obviously you’ve never been ATTACKED or BITTEN by one!

  18. Obviously you’ve never been ATTACKED or BITTEN by one!

  19. andy’s got it, picasso all the way, Aloha

  20. andy’s got it, picasso all the way, Aloha

  21. Humma humma

  22. Queens Triggers are the most beautiful fish in the ocean….

  23. If triggers were 6′ long we wouldn’t be diving during nesting season!

  24. I have to agree with Picasso.

  25. I have to agree with Picasso.

  26. Evil fish, used to be a diver at an aquarium and got a nasty bite on the finger during nesting. Still have a scar.

  27. Evil fish, used to be a diver at an aquarium and got a nasty bite on the finger during nesting. Still have a scar.

  28. Humma humma

  29. The queen and the Clown. I love all the triggers…

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