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Triggerfishes Pufferfishes and Relatives: Tetraodontiformes

Behavior And Reproduction

To defend themselves, pufferfishes, triggerfishes, and their relatives use their body armor, ability to inflate, and ability to produce poison. The color patterns show attackers that these fishes are poisonous and help the fishes hide themselves in seaweed or coral. Some of these fishes live alone and are aggressive in defending their territory. Others gather in groups of hundreds in open water to look for food. Some species form mating pairs that patrol a home territory. Scientists know little about the reproduction of pufferfishes, triggerfishes, and their relatives. Some release eggs that sink to the bottom, and others release eggs that drift in open water. Some lay eggs in nests on the bottom and guard them. The eggs of most of these fishes hatch into free-floating larvae (LAR-vee), or the early stage that must change form before becoming adults.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceFish and Other Cold-Blooded VertebratesTriggerfishes Pufferfishes and Relatives: Tetraodontiformes - Physical Characteristics, Behavior And Reproduction, Clown Triggerfish (balistoides Conspicillum): Species Accounts, White-spotted Puffer (arothron Hispidus): Species Accounts - GEOGRAPHIC RANG