TRIGGERFISH
BALISTIDAE
Queen Triggerfish
Balistes vetula
    Ecological Descriptors
Habitat Size (cm) Diet Behaviour Sex 
Co, R 60 Ech, Veg, Cru, Wor Sh, I F
 
 
Description:
Adult: Body oval, relatively deep, robust and laterally compressed. Purple to green to yellowish to brown, with yellow lower head and chest.
2 oblique bright blue lines on cheek. Fine blue lines with yellow borders radiating from eye. Tail base with blue bar dorsal, anal and tail fins edged in blue. Streaming tips on tail.
Juvenile: Grey brown, blue oblique lines across lower head.
Dashed oblique black lines on body.

Ecology
Found over rocky or coral areas at depths usually from 3 to 30m. May form schools, sometimes solitary over sand and grassy areas. Prey items include macroalgae, bivalves, crabs, starfish, sea cucumbers, shrimp, and polychaetes. It preys on sea urchins by blowing water to overturn it and then attacks it where the spines are short.

Life Cycle:
Male Queen Triggerfish establish territories of approximately 10 m in diameter, attracting several females. Nests are built in the sand by moving fins rapidly or creating a current by blowing water with the mouth near the bottom to create sand bowls. The eggs are released into these bowls after a courtship ritual. The nest is defended by the mating pair, reproduction occurs year-round, peaking in the autumn and again in the winter.  Size at 1st maturity  ~18cm and lives for 7 to 16 years.
Queen Triggerfish
Synonym:
Black Triggerfish
Queen Triggerfish
Queen Triggerfish Juvenile
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