Porcupinefishes


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Porcupinefishes, burrfishes, spinny puffers, balloon-fishes and blowfishes are the common names for the members of the Diodontidae family. They are found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific oceans. They are recognized by their well-developed sharp spines and inflatable body. Their teeth are fused into a single beak-like unit in each jaw and they do not have pelvic fins.

Most of the adult porcupinefishes are found inshore and most of the juveniles are pelagic. Among the slowest of fishes, they appear to buzz slowly through the water. They are found on rocky and coral reefs, and over sand, weed, or sponge-covered bottoms to depths of 150 m. They feed on hard-shelled benthic invertebrates which are crushed with their powerful beak-like jaws. Most adults are solitary and nocturnal. They are thought to have toxic flesh.

There are 7 genera and about 18 species worldwide. Malaysia has about 4 species.

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Scientific Name: Diodon liturosus  Shaw, 1804
English Name: Black-blotched Porcupinefish
Local Malay Name: Ikan Buntal Landak, Buntal-landak Tompok
Bahasa Indonesia: Ikan Buntel Duren, Buntal Durian, Buntal Karang
Thai Name | ชื่อสามัญภาษาไทย: ปลาปักเป้าหนามหลังแถบ (Plā pạkpêā h̄nāmh̄lạng t̄hæb)
Main Identification Features: Frontal spines shorter than spines immediately behind pectoral fins. Large dorsal blotches with distinct pale border. Blotch below eye not continue over top of head.
Size: Maximum total length 65 cm.
Habitat and Ecology: Estuaries to coral reefs, to at least 40 m depth. Usually found solitary. A nocturnal fish feeding on hard-shelled invertebrates. Sheltering in caves and ledges during the day. Capable of inflating its internal water bladder when frightened or disturbed.
Remarks: Be cautious of the powerful jaws. May be poisonous - Do not eat.





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