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triggerfish or Odonus Niger
is the sole member of its genus. Triggerfish
are assigned to the family Balistidae. The niger is native to open waters and the reefs
systems situated in the sifter
current regions of the Indo-Pacific. Populations exist from southern Japan,
down the entire east coast of Africa, ranging as far south as Australia.
derived from the way spines on their dorsal fins
move when they swim. The movement looks as if their dorsal fin is being
triggered. These fish have the ability to make their dorsal fin erect
threatened. Erect fins serve the dual purpose of making the fish harder
swallow or to dislodge from a crack of crevice it has sought refuge in
are among the
marine species that possess teeth. One of the more
unique characteristics specific to the niger
is the color of their teeth or fangs as they are often referred to.
have a distinctive reddish hue. This species is commonly sold under the
red-tooth or red-toothed triggerfish.
deceived by the niger
triggerfish you see for sale in a fish store. These are juveniles.
are one of the largest fish made commercially available by the aquarium
industry. An adult can reach a length of 20 inches when fully grown.
This is a
narrow bodied oval shaped fish. Nigers
are typically blue or purple in color. They have pale heads with deeper
coloration on their bodies and a distinctive lyre shaped caudal fin.
make a grunting sound when they are excited or frightened.
There is a
general rule of
thumb when dealing with larger marine species.
You should allow approximately 5 gallons of water for every inch of
equates to a minimum tanks size of 100 gallons for a single adult niger.
You must have a very large aquarium if you intend to keep this species
community fish. They prefer brightly lit aquariums with high water
Providing them a place to hide in is highly recommended. They will
dimly lit area with diminished water flow as a place to rest.
have a well deserved
reputation of being aggressive animals. The niger
is one of the most even tempered species of
the group. They will get along fine
with other fish that are of similar
and not exceedingly timid. If you intend to add one to your community
should be one of the smallest fish in the aquarium. Nigers
will tolerate the presence of their own
species provided they are introduced simultaneously to the aquarium as
a marine reef they will
probably nibble on your sponges but will leave your coral unmolested.
frequently lives in excess of 10 years.
are omnivorous. They have healthy appetites and will eat just about
you throw their way including flake food and pellets. As with any
species you will want to provide them with a varied diet. Flakes or
an acceptable staple. Supplements can include vitamin enriched brine
frozen products developed for marine omnivores and finely chopped fresh
seafood. Make sure they also get an adequate supply of plant matter to
out their diet. They will readily eat the same vegetables you serve for
A note of precaution; this species has teeth. They have been known to
hand that feeds them. Although they are incapable of inflicting serious
they can deliver a powerful enough bite to draw blood.
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