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FAQs about Pseudobalistes Triggerfishes

Related FAQs: Triggerfishes in General, Triggerfish: Identification, Selection, Selection 2, Compatibility, Behavior, Systems, Feeding, Diseases, Triggerfish Health 2

Related Articles: Triggerfish, Pseudobalistes Species, Red Sea Triggerfishes

Triggerfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
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New Print Book on Create Space: Available

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Blue line triggerfish       5/21/17
Hello WWM. I have a question about Pseudobalistes fuscus triggers.
<Neat animals>
I tried to find some information about temperament and tank mates / size for this species to little avail.
<Not a commonly collected, kept Balistid species... never really common, and small individuals especially hard to come by...>
I am considering purchasing a juvenile 2" or so for my tank. Tank mates would be a porcupine and spiny box puffer along with a Indian trigger (Melichthys indicus) all currently in the 4 to 6" length range. What are your thoughts on this?
<How large is this system? Likely fine (given very individualistic temperaments of Triggers) if the tank is very large... hundreds of gallons. Less so the smaller the size. The Blue Line will get much larger....>
Would this be plausible? (If this is a no-go I am considering a pinktail to finish off the stocking of the tank?
<Really about the same chance, rule of system size here>
Thanks for your input and what you do at WWM.
<Ah, welcome Brian. Bob Fenner>

identify juvenile trigger     6/13/14
<... why didn't your message bounce? You've sent orders of magnitude too large files>
Good Day All
<Read here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>
I believe your website has great content on saltwater fish. I need help identifying this juve triggerfish. When I originally purchased it 8 months ago, the colors were not as pronounced. Originally thinking a Starry trigger. Than a Pineapple trigger but with growth and that slight mustache developing over the lip, it appears to be a titan trigger. I truly hope it is a Pineapple or at least a cross breed as the size of a adult Titan scares me. It is a very slow grower but the idea of having a species only 600g Titan tank haunts me. Any help is appreciated. I attached several pics for viewing. Thanx 

Pseudobalistes Fuscus Distribution; geog. color, markings var.     6/1/14
Hello crew, thank you for all the masses of information you have on this website, which i constantly refer to for my own issues. My question for today was regarding the Blueline/Jigsaw Triggerfish, Pseudobalistes Fuscus, and whether or not its distribution effects its colour or patterning.
<Ah yes; it does... the ones in the Red Sea are quite different than in the further Indo-Pacific (browner bodied, more aqua blue lines)... but not discernibly less aggressive>
I am aware that some species of fish have slight colour and even temperament differences depending on where they are sourced from such as the colouring of the Harlequin Tuskfish and I was unsure if the same applied to Blueline Triggers.
The reason I am asking a question like this is because I have read on various forums people suggesting different sourced Bluelines appear different and so I felt you might be more knowledgeable on whether this is in fact true or not. Thank you for your help. Jake
<Well; this species can/does change colour (behaviorally) very quickly as well... Best to have you look on the Net at folks pix from throughout its distribution. Some here:
Bob Fenner>

Pseudobalistes Fuscus Jigsaw Triggerfish Compatibility (in-)     5/29/14
Hello, this is my first time asking personally for help and have appreciated the vast amounts of information you have repeatedly provided.
Currently I have a 370 gallon aquarium that is home to a 7" map puffer, a 5.5" harlequin tusk, a 4" clown triggerfish,
<... keep your eye on>

a 3" half moon (or white tail as I believe they are two separate species and I can not identify him 100% for sure) and two 2-3 foot morays, a zebra and a snowflake.
<Chew toys for Balistids>

All of the fish have very laid back personalities so I am very lucky so far. I have plenty of live rock, in particular Tonga branch rock which has created vast numbers of overhangs and caves of all sizes, a large sump filtration system, 2 UV sterilizers and an 850 Deltec protein skimmer. My main question is regarding the addition of a young jigsaw triggerfish, Pseudobalistes Fuscus and whether you believe any negative outcomes could occur. I would plan on adding one around the 3-4" range (similar to the clown trigger or slightly smaller)
so as not to disrupt the clown trigger too badly, however you may have a better idea for going around this.
<See WWM re...>
All the fish I have seem to get along with each other fine,
<... for now>

with the only minor conflicts involving the map puffer having his food stolen by the clown trigger. Typically the "half moon" is the only fish to show any aggression towards new fish by his grunting whilst the others just ignore them or keep a close eye on them. My main concern would be adding the jigsaw trigger and its effect on the clown trigger, which I hope would be fine.
<In the long term... trouble>

The clown trigger simply did not care when the "half moon" was added at all. My tank is 3.1m long and 0.8m deep with plenty of large open areas
alongside the live rock so I hope this provides enough swimming room for all the fish when they reach a mature size. Again you may not believe this to be a realistic idea and I would appreciate any advice you have to offer.
Thanks. Jake
<Time will tell. Bob Fenner>

Mysterious Death (P. fuscus) & "Feeding incompatibility" 2/4/07 Hi All, <Go ahead, "caller"> Long time reader, first time emailer (always wanted to say that) <Dork... ;)> To the point: I woke up this morning with a dead (floating) Blue Line <(Pseudobalistes fuscus)> Trigger.  <Perrrty.> I've had him for about 6 months and during that time he's grown from about 1 1/2" to 4".   <Wow! That's fast, indeed!> He was the boss of the tank and up to and including last night, was round, robust, and very healthy.  I tested the water today and everything was fine as were the other fish.   <"Fine" water quality is relative, or speculative at least. Need real numbers.> He had no visible marks on him.  Besides some sort of random genetic internal organ failure, <Mmm... yes, barring that...> two possibilities occurred to me as causes; he could have smacked into the dwarf lionfish when feeding and been envenomed (if that's the right word), <Not impossible, but you *should* be able to see puncture-wounds on the trigger, and would've seen some very obvious signs of "envenomation" (I like that word as much as any other...) in the form of erratic swimming, pain, etc.> or he could have gotten some of that wiry stuff from muscles <mussels> that I feed caught in his gills or digestive system.   <Again, not impossible, though not likely IMO.> Are either of these possible causes of death?   <Not to me.>Is there something else that comes to mind for this sort of thing? <With what information I have, I would rate water-quality as number one, with the lionfish spine as a second. After these two, I would speculate about an internal infection that killed your friend. > While I'm emailing, there's one other thing I've been wondering for a while.   Having set up a couple of 'predator' type tanks before this one<.> I've repeatedly run into a stocking compatibility issue that seldom or never is mentioned in books or on the web, yet in my experience is of critical importance.   <Ok, cough it up.> Basically it's the issue of feeding compatibility.  What I mean by that is this: some fish like groupers and lionfish should only be fed about twice per week depending on size.  Most other fish need to be fed once to twice per day.   <Or more...> However, the groupers and lions are able and willing to gulp down vast quantities of food intended for other tankmates, even while using sticks, nets or whatever to distract during feedings.  <True.> While trying to adequately feed the tankmates (wrasses, triggers, angels), I have twice before ended up with the same problems: 1) Overfed and rapidly growing lionfish and groupers (in one case a very aggressive miniatus)  2) Minimally fed or under fed and slow growing tankmates (including one Picasso trigger who was nearing bite size)  3) Diminished water quality from having to throw more food in the tank than I wanted and having the wrong fish eat it. These situations both culminated having to trade some of the livestock after a period of about 2 years.  This is the reason in my new tank I have included a Dwarf Lionfish which in terms of feeding has been working out much better.  <Ahh, yes. More "manageable."> In my opinion, the only good companions for large Lions and Groupers are others who are able to feed seldom, then wolf down their food in the same manner.   <I disagree. I have had many systems thrive with both groupers and lionfish housed with tangs, angels, triggers, eels, etc. I think the "key" here is to teach your other aggressive fishes to feed from your hands. The triggers should have no problem associating your hand with food, and the lions are usually less-inclined to grab right from your hand. Wrasses can be fed smaller chunks that would be less appealing to the lions/groupers, too. As for the angels, they have different nutritional needs from the lion/grouper combo, so I wouldn't think they would be gulping down the angel-food. > Morays and Sharks seem like good choices though may have to be fed by a stick.  Puffers might be ok.  However, the vast majority of fish often touted as being possible Lion/Grouper companions (Large angels, wrasses, tangs, and butterflies, and more peaceful triggers) all seem to have such dissimilar feeding habits as to be very poor choices for the long term, period.   <Really haven't seen this to pose a problem in practice.> Is feeding compatibility an issue with other types of tank setups?   <Can become a problem, but with the variety of foods that most tank-mates thrive on, lions and groupers turn many of them down. Well, at least the lions do. I find that the heavy-hitters prefer the bigger hunks of food, and that they will ignore smaller stuff if there is big food available.> Why is it almost never discussed? <Got me, bub.> Thanks in advance, David <You are welcome, and feel free to send some more info on H2O-chemistry our way. -GrahamT>

Trigger, Sand, and Live Rock   12/28/05 Crew,  <KC> Merry Christmas! <And to you> My question relates to the interesting behavior of my Picasso trigger.  He constantly sifts the sand, and spreads it all over my live rock.  In fact, half of my live rock is now covered completely by sand (talk about a white Christmas!). <Ah, the joys of keeping triggers.> Is this bad for the live rock?  I plan to use a power head to blow most of the sand off the rock.  But I would like to know if I need to clear the sand off my rock every day or couple days to save my rock. <I don't believe any harm will come to the rock but for aesthetic reasons I think I would blow the sand off every couple days.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanks KC

Friendly Fuscus Trigger? I was just checking out one of you web pages on the Pseudobalistes triggers. Had one more question. You mentioned the yellow finned was fairly gentle in the aquarium, but what about fuscus. I imagine if it was you would have mentioned it. Anyway, I'd appreciate your feedback. <While they are definitely not the most aggressive, I would not describe the Fuscus as peaceful. Also, all of these descriptions are broad generalizations and may not be applicable to individual specimens. -Steven Pro> Ethan Millard

Triggerfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
New eBook on Amazon: Available here
New Print Book on Create Space: Available

by Robert (Bob) Fenner

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