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FAQs about Xanthichthys Triggerfishes, Behavior

Related FAQs: Xanthichthys Triggers 1, Xanthichthys Triggers 2, & FAQs on Xanthichthys Identification, Xanthichthys Compatibility, Xanthichthys Selection, Xanthichthys Systems, Xanthichthys Feeding, Xanthichthys Disease, Xanthichthys Reproduction, & Triggerfishes in General, Triggerfish: Identification, Selection, Selection 2, Compatibility, Behavior, Systems, Feeding, Diseases, Triggerfish Health 2Reproduction,

Related Articles: Xanthichthys TriggersTriggerfish, Red Sea Triggerfishes


Triggerfishes for  Marine Aquariums

Diversity, Selection & Care

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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Xanthichthys Blue Throat Color     7/8/16
I have had a juvenile blue throat trigger for about 8 months now in my 180g mixed reef. I purchased him with a pronounced blue throat and yellow around his tail. He still has the yellow around his tail but his blue throat is very faint and hardly visible. Does this species change sex?
<Mmm; no... as far as I'm aware, Balistids are of determinate sex. MUCH more likely a matter of diet, water quality, a lack of female to show off for>
Could it be possible that he is now a she? Or could it be the absence of a female?
<Ah yes>
Huge fan of the site! Many thanks,
Spencer Hall
<Cheers, Bob Fenner>
Re: Xanthichthys Blue Throat Color    7/8/16

Thanks Bob
<Thank you Spence>
He's got a good diet, I switch between mysis formula 1 and 2 and large krill for him to grind that beak down with. He also munches the algae wrapper I put in for the tangs from time to time.
Thanks again for such a quick response!
<Welcome! BobF>
Spencer Hall

Trigger behavior question       1/4/15
I have a blue-jaw trigger that behaves normally most of the time.
Periodically, he goes to the surface, sticks his head out, and bobs up and down. He seems fine otherwise. Any ideas why? I have searched everywhere online. Thank you for your time. I am very curious about his behavior.
Dusty Goucher, DVM
<Hi Dusty. This doesn't sound all that unusual, triggers are full of character and have pretty distinct personalities and do a lot of this sort of thing. Maybe a food seeking behavior or interested in something he sees up there. Hard to say much else without more information. No marks on him?
Is he eating well, and what? What other inhabitants are in the system, what size is the tank, how long have you had him, how long has he done this/how often? -Earl>
Re: Trigger behavior question
> I have only had him 3 weeks. There does not seem to be any problems. He
> has behaved this way since I got him and does it 1-2 times a day. He is in
> a 55gal with a porcupine puffer, sail fin tang, and a Foxface - all of whom
> are doing fine too. No one is aggressive (or at least equally so) and there
> are no signs of damage to anyone.
> <I would just keep an eye on him (check him more than once a day). Assuming the other animals are normal, if you've ruled out any problems with the water chemistry, I would assume it's just a behavior this particular fish has, especially since it is after all pretty recently removed from its environment into a completely foreign environment with a bunch of strangers. If he doesn't seem to be gasping for air or have any buoyancy/swimming trouble I would just enjoy it as one of an array of personality quirks these guys often have. My favorite fishy family, personally.>
> Dusty Goucher, DVM

Blue Jaw Trigger night time freak outs       12/23/15
Hi again! I hope this letter finds you well during this Christmas season!
I'm hoping your infinite wisdom may help me find some relief for my poor blue jaw. I've had him for about a year now. He's been very healthy and colourful. But I do believe he's scared of the dark. Is this possible? I have my tank set up in the den outside my room so at night I can hear all the commotion. Almost like clock work about an hour after the moon light
has finally dimmed all the way off and everyone else is asleep he just starts bolting to and fro. Smashing into everything. I'm convinced one morning I'll find him on the floor and I desperately want to avoid that. I have LEDs on ramp timers that take about three hours to go from full brightness to completely off. I also keep a small LED nightlight on in the den for bathroom runs. There are no kids or animals or human movement of any kind at this hour to prompt his outbursts. Do you think perhaps he's sick or just getting spooked by hermits? Do you have any suggestions to calm him down? This has been going on since he first joined my home and is not a sudden onset symptom.
Thanks again for being so incredible!!
<Some key questions here... how big's the tank? What sort of tankmates? Sufficient comfortable hiding places? Triggers are not especially easily spooked, but they do have quite specific ideas about what makes a good home. They need space, a fair amount given their territorial psychology, and won't cohabit well with other triggers. Xanthichthys are at the mellower end of the Balistid range (it's all relative of course; these aren't mindless, harmless fish by any means). So anything more territorial can cause problems. In terms of tank size and hiding places, if these fish feel confined, they're unlikely to settle, and bear in mind that Triggers "bed down" for the night by wedging into cracks and using their modified dorsal and anal fins to hold them in place. If your chap can't find a crevice that feels right to him, he won't settled down easily at night.
This is doubly true if there's an obvious "night shift" of predators (morays, but even Ariid catfish in my experience) that the Triggers aren't au fait with. Assess, and act accordingly. I'm not a fan of night lights (moonlight tubes for example) but these might be useful. Cheers, Neale.><<Well done! RMF>>

Sargassum trigger, beh., sys.      6/10/13
I have a Redtail triggerfish a 57 gallon tank.
<Mmm, needs more room than this>

I know he's supposed to be in a bigger tank but he is a small fish at 3 inches. I know I can house him in this tank for a year before he gets big enough to transport into a bigger tank or donate into my lfs.  My question is that he likes to swim in circles around my MP 40 during random parts of the day. Is this a normal thing for a triggerfish to do or do you have any knowledge that triggerfish like doing this in general?
Thank you.
<Is normal to be active... swim in patterns; but this can likewise be symptomatic of neurotic behavior; being bored...
Bob Fenner>

New Yellow Tang and Rigens Triggerfish. Latter, comp./beh.     11/17/12
Hello!  I have a 90 gallon aquarium with some coral and 140lbs of nice rock.  I added a Rigens Triggerfish and a Yellow Tang (at the request of my daughter) at the same time two days ago. 
The tang is doing well.  The trigger went in the tank, found a cave and hid.  He came out last night for 20 seconds to gobble some krill. 
The tang appears to keep looking in the cave at the trigger.  Is the tang a problem to the trigger's acclimation?
<Not likely, no. Balistids, particularly the genus Xanthichthys often take a few weeks to become situated...>
 Did I make a big mistake introducing them simultaneously?
 Or, as I've been told, could the Rigens Trigger  hide for days or a week until he's comfortable?
<Ah, yes>
Thank you for your help!
Dan Callaghan
<Welcome. Bob Fenner> 
Re: New Yellow Tang and Rigens Triggerfish.    11/17/12

Thanks Bob...great website...I appreciate your swift reply, as I was worried about the little guy.  Have a great Thanksgiving. 
<Glad to assist your efforts Dan. Cheers, BobF>
Re: New Yellow Tang and Rigens Triggerfish. Xanthichthys beh. f'      – 11/19/12

Trigger update...he comes out to eat at night.  There was a meet and greet with his tank mates.  He's still very shy, but investigated half of the tank.  Then, eats and back to his cave.
<Further improvement in time. B>
Dan Callaghan

Two questions: Inter Genus wrasse compatibility, Crosshatch Trigger Behavior -- 06/09/10
Good morning!
<Slipping past quick!>
I am working on stocking a 600g FOWLR system and I have a question that I have not been able to answer with regards to wrasses.. The tank is 96 long, 36 deep, 30tall, and houses about 300 lbs of live rock.. I have a 150
gallon refugium beneath filled mostly with live rock rubble, and growing Chaeto.. Skimming is performed by (2) I-Tech 400 conical skimmers with dual pumps in a separate sump.. On top of this, I run 2 36" canisters with activated charcoal..
<Sounds good>
With that out of the way, I do run a pretty crowded ship.. I'm currently housing 2 Acanthurus palani tangs, 2 Naso tangs, a blue hippo, 2 purple Zebrasoma, 1 yellow Zebrasoma, 1 desjardinii Zebrasoma, 2 crosshatch triggers,
1 orange spotted Rabbitfish, 1 coral beauty, 1 Copperband butterfly, 3 female flame wrasses, 2 ocellaris clowns, and a few (not sure on count anymore) cardinal fish.. Whew! I've never actually listed all of them before! Now on to question number 1: Can I add a female *Thalassoma quinquevittatum to his bunch?
<Likely would be fine. Fast, smart species>
*I'm after just that last splash of Thalassoma movement to the tank.. I wasn't sure how the flame wrasses would react to the addition, if at all.
<Not likely to react at all... though I would add a male (C. jordani) here to go w/>
. I would plan on quarantining the new wrasse before insertion, and I usually add new fish in while in a container with holes to let the new fish adapt to conditions before letting them loose into the general population.. Any thoughts?
<Keep beer cool, in a dark setting>
Ok.. Question #2: On a lighter note: My male crosshatch, (the pair was recently added, but has been in a friends' tank for over 1 year) seems to like to take position directly in from of one of my powerheads when I am
near the tank, but not feeding.. He swims directly into the current for a few moments, then moves out and "yawns" a few times, then back into the current.. If I break out my feeding cup and load it w/ food, he comes straight to me and starts begging.. He eats well, and then goes right back to the current..
Any thoughts?
<A nice way to spend one's time in such a captive setting I guess>
I'm kind of baffled by this.. I know when I move away a bit, he just goes out into the water column with the rest of the fish and swims..
He's always been a bit eccentric.. Just didn't know if this was him being him.. :) Also, and this is more of a footnote for long, long term future reference.. Will the crosshatch get along with a humu-humu?
<Generally yes>
Thank you! You guys have a Fantastic website!
<Thank you for being part of it Aaron. Bob Fenner>

02/03/10 stocking list. Triggerfish -- 3/3/10
<Hi Connor>
Thanks for the quick response
My tank is 150 gallon and already has a Harlequin Tusk. This is my planned stocking list:
1 Harlequin Tusk
1 Russell's Lionfish
1 Hippo Tang
1 Bluethroat Trigger(male)
1 Freckled Hawkfish
The last response said that the Foxface Rabbitfish would work instead of the Trigger, what about with the Trigger?
<Should all go together, but not in this size... I would reduce the numbers of large fish on this list, you have five that get to a foot or more.. too many.. reduce this to three at most>
Last question, will this Trigger have personality like the others?
<They are nice fish, but yes many of the others have more 'personality' than this one, but that is also what makes them sometime troublemakers. For a good balance, I actually like the Melichthys Triggerfish, my fave?
Melichthys indicus, because it only gets to about 8 inches, is pretty good natured, and still has that 'beefy' look. Try here:

Blue Jaw Triggerfish/Behavior 12/10/09
<Hello Jenny>
I have a 76 gallon tank. my Blue Jaw Trigger that I've had for about a week in my reef tank started swimming in circles after doing a 5 gal water change. I have an allardi clown and a Copper Banded Butterfly Fish in the
tank along with some snails, brittle starfush <starfish> and a small sea urchin. When doing the water change last night he disappeared into a rock. After finishing the water change he emerged but was swimming in circles in a clockwise direction only for about 24 hours now. Salinity levels are 1.023, alkalinity is 196, calcium is around
420, ph is 8.0. I have searched everything online no one has had this problem. I called my LFS and he said he may have injured his spine somehow on a rock. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for him he is so beautiful I don't want to loose him.
<I've heard of similar reactions with triggerfish after water changes and there are probably a few things to examine here which is source water? Is the pH of the newly mixed water the same as the tank? Salinity identical?
Temperature? Are you letting the freshly mixed saltwater aerate/circulate for 24 hours before using? Any of these things or a combination could cause the reaction you describe.
James (Salty Dog)>

Blue Jaw Triggers.... beh., in/comp.    12/7/09
Bob, I got a pair of blue jaw triggers from another reefer over 3 months ago and they have been fine in my tank. I had asked if they ever mated previously and the answer was no. In trying to do some research on how this pair may mate,
<Mmm, Balistids don't mate as in pair up permanently>
there really isn't much out there. About a week ago my male started acting really odd, basically staying in a cave near my huge sebae anemone
<Luckily not eating it>
and not really coming out even to eat. He had moved some sand away so I thought it could be a form of nesting. From a visual standpoint he looks perfectly healthy, however, his motor skills are not in line as he really hasn't shown any signs of swimming normal. I've been really busy with work so I haven't had much time to really watch this behavior but yesterday I noticed he had moved to a different cave and appeared to be stuck between the rock work. When I moved the rocks he swam backwards to another cave and got harassed a bit by my Desjardini Tang so I starting thinking that may be the issue as blue jaws can be fairly timid. It just seems a bit odd since they all have been living together for quite a while now.
<How large are these?>
So this morning my fiancé came downstairs and heard loud tapping on the glass and immediately woke me up to check it out as the female appeared to be attacking the male. I was able to get some video footage of it, still
not sure what to think about this. You can hear the sound of the fins hitting the glass.
Thanks in advance for the advice, Marlin (H20poloman2) SDMAS
<Yikes, the male is showing submissive behavior (as in "I give up") with the apparent female (it may be a late onset male) attacking it... These need to be separated NOW, as in immediately, or else the one will be killed. The not-so-alpha male was likely "hiding in its cave" to avoid the other. Be seeing you (I think the SDMAS holiday party is at our house) soon. Bob Fenner>

Bluejaw Triggerfish (sex change?) -- 11/25/09
Dear Crew,
<<Greetings Christopher>>
I recently acquired what I thought was a female bluejaw trigger for my tank.
<<Neat fish'¦I had a M-F pair in my 375g reef at one time>>
I have had a large male for a while and added the female to attempt a pair.
I moved the male out of the tank for a few days and introduced both at the same time. There is no  aggression, but I noticed this morning the "female" is going thru a color change.
It appears her back fin is changing color from burgundy to yellow. Is it possible they change?
<<Not that I am aware>><Me neither. RMF>
The female is about 4-5 inches long.
<<Maybe just a matter of interpretation or even a geographic difference, but the females I have seen had a 'brown' margin to the back of the caudal fin. This size seems a bit large to be a juvenile changing colors'¦but I don't know how else to explain it. And though there may not be trouble now, if this is indeed a second male, as it matures you will likely have to remove one or the other from this setting>>
Christopher R. Sandoval
<<Cheers my friend'¦ Eric Russell>>

Blue Chin Trigger Behavior  12/17/08 Dear WWM Crew: <<Hello Chris>> For almost a year now, I've kept a 125 gallon FOWLR tank that's home to a 4.5" long blue chin trigger, along with 7 others: purple tang, flame angel, Longnose hawk, cinnamon clown, neon Dottyback, Foxface, and a coral banded shrimp. All of the livestock has been established in the tank for a while (the trigger's been here for 8 months). Initially - for about a week - the trigger was very shy and would often retreat into his hole...behavior I've seen described on WWM as pretty common. <<Yes>> As expected, the trigger became comfortable with the environment quickly enough, and was soon extremely active and confident. He was by far the most voracious eater of the bunch, often seemingly slamming into the side of the tank as soon as he spotted me. <<Indeed'¦ These intelligent fishes can even become quite puppy-like at times>> I typically feed about 2-3 moderate portions daily of either Formula 1, Formula 2, frozen mysis, or freeze dried plankton, plus occasional strips of marine algae or romaine lettuce <<Do note that terrestrial greens are of little real benefit and possibly even a hazard re introduction of pesticides>> for the herbivores (which the trigger would shred to ribbons). When I would target feed the coral banded shrimp, the trigger was so bold as to often snatch the food from the tongs or even my fingers (rarely). 5 days ago, however, the trigger became extremely skittish for no apparent reason and has not been eating. <<Mmm'¦ Has there been any change to the environment surrounding this system (e.g. � increased foot traffic, open window shades, noise/vibration, etc.) that may be spooking the fish?>> As soon as I approach the tank, he dives into his hole and won't come out until I'm out of view. The other fish are still quite active and eating well, so by the time he reappears, the food's all gone. And when he does come out, he's not as active as before. From a distance (as close as I can get to the tank without spooking him), I don't see any lesions, fin damage, or cloudy eyes. He looks the same as before. I tested the water param.s today: pH of 8.2; ammonia, nitrite, and phosphate all 0; nitrate a little high at 20 (but it has always seemed to fluctuate around 10-20). Do you have any thoughts as to what might have caused this dramatic change of behavior? What, if anything, can/should I do? Sincerely, Chris S. <<Well Chris, since bullying doesn't seem to be an issue and there are no visible external complaints, I suspect the problem might be internal parasites. Unfortunately this is difficult to treat, especially considering the fish is not eating (you can find more info here and among the associated links: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasiti.htm ). If this is the case, it's very likely there's nothing you can do to save the fish. But it's also possible that something has just spooked this fish and it will eventually readjust/come around (we'll keep our fingers crossed for the latter possibility). Isolating the fish to a hospital tank to see if it will feed without competition is an option, but you have to weigh the added stress involved. There's no easy solution in my opinion'¦ If the problem stems from an internal parasitic complaint, then I don't think anything you do will change the outcome. If the problem is more an environmental and/or social issue, then I would strive to ensure optimum water quality in an environment free of agonistic tankmates and keep trying to get the fish to feed. Regards, EricR>>

Re: Blue Chin Trigger Behavior - 12/19/08 Eric, <<Hello Chris>> In addition to about 100 lbs. live rock, a wet/dry filter and protein skimmer for filtration, I'm using an 18W Coralife (turbo-twist) UV sterilizer. <<Okay>> Also, I do monthly 15% water changes with RO water. <<Good>> I was under the impression that the UV would go a long way in preventing parasite problems. <<Mmm'¦>> What is your opinion on the effectiveness of this type/size of UV to control parasites here? <<I don't see this as much benefit in this instance (that's not to say these devices are of �no� benefit), at least not with the macro-organisms concerned here. And it's almost a certainty the fish had the organism(s) since before collection (if this is indeed the problem here). Most any fishes in the wild, as well as those we keep, harbor parasites (whether external, internal, or both). And like Bob indicates in his article, most are able to successfully coexist with these organisms. It's usually when something tips the scale in favor of the parasite that troubles begin. And oftentimes this is stress of one form or another>> I'm hopeful it's not parasites <<Me too>> ...none of the fish (trigger included) display the symptoms (spots, scratching, rapid/heavy breathing, lethargy) mentioned in the article you cited. <<Good to know, though symptoms are not always text-book... Often just a change in behavior/feeding habits as you have mentioned is an indication of trouble. But I hope I am wrong here re the internal parasites>> But if it is a parasite issue, I'm gathering that it would be difficult to eliminate the problem without drastic measures. <<It is likely too late'¦ If you could induce the fish to eat, a treated food like that from New Life Spectrum is worth a try>> Tear down and reassembly of the entire system is something I really would like to avoid at all costs. <<Not needed/of benefit here in my opinion>> I can't use copper medications either, because of the live rock and inverts. <<Indeed, do not do this'¦ It would probably only hasten the Triggers demise anyway in such an instance as this. And for certain, such �shotgun� treatment for �unknown� maladies do more harm than good to everything>> Thank you again for your help. Chris S. <<Maybe moving the rockwork around a bit to disorient the other fishes would swing the advantage back to the Trigger re its nervousness in the tank. Otherwise, without something obvious to treat, I think your best course of action is to continue to observe and offer foods. Regards, Eric Russell>>

Funny Trigger Story - 09/23/06 I just moved my three-inch male Blue Throat Trigger from quarantine to the display tank 24 hours ago, and he has remained hidden in a nook in the rockwork of my 90 gallon tank ever since. <<Not unusual...can be rather shy/timid as triggers go>> I'm not worried about him.  He acted the same way in quarantine for the first three or four days only to come out and be friendly for the following month. <<Indeed>> I have two RBTA (a recent split), a B/W Ocellaris Clown pair, a Twin-spot Hogfish and a small Wheeler's shrimp goby that hasn't found his pistol shrimp yet.  I have probably twenty snails, two large cleaner shrimp, one hermit crab and one small porcelain crab that came with some live rock, all running well and getting along for the past seven or eight months. <<Excellent>> Anyway, the trigger has taken up residence in the same cave as the porcelain crab. <<The porcelain crab hasn't taken up residence in one of the anemones?>> Now here is the odd thing.  The crab, which can't even be an inch long, seems to be trying to bully the trigger out of its hiding spot. <<Amazing creatures we keep, eh!>> They seem to have come to an arrangement and aren't bothering each other at the moment. <<Ah, yes...and will likely cohabitate just fine>> I just thought y'all would like to hear about a tiny crab picking on a trigger that is probably twenty times his size.  Thanks y'all for the wonderful work you do.  My fish and I owe you for all of your great advice. Jonathan <<Were pleased to be of service...and thank you for sharing.  EricR>>

Questionable Aquarium Service...Trying To Do What's Needed - 09/22/06 Dear Wet Web Crew, <<Hello>> My employer has a beautiful 200-gallon salt-water tank, and has a tank service that comes in and cares for this tank. <<Ok>> I have a serious lack of confidence in this company because I did a little research on your site and they have made many really bad mistakes. <<Some do yes, but doesn't mean this one is "bad".  Have you been able to talk to other/previous customers of this company?  Have they done anything to make you feel uncomfortable with their level of service?>> First, they got the chemicals wrong in the tank, which killed most of the fish. <<Ahh...I see...sounds like you may have good reason for your concerns...>> Then, when they replaced the fish, they brought us 5 crabs, a blue-throat Triggerfish, 3 assorted angelfish <<Mmm...>> (in separate bags. NOT introduced at the same time), and a pair of ocellaris (among others).  Of course, the Trigger ate the crabs immediately.  I am an administrative assistant with little/no knowledge of fish, and have been tasked with taking care of their diet, and making sure they get what they need. <<Sounds like you need to start doing some reading/researching my friend.  Google searches on our site and the NET re the species names will yield much information>> So I need a little advice from professionals that actually care about the fish.  After the initial eating of the crabs, and the disappearance of one of the smaller Angelfish (which after reading on your site I found out why <<...?>>), the blue-throat trigger has started exhibiting odd behavior.  He lies down at the bottom of the tank on his right side, and just lays very still for long periods on time. <<Maybe not all that "odd" after all.  Is there live rock in this tank? (should be if there isn't)...Does this tank have any type of decor/rock work?  These triggers will very often "rest" in a hole or crevice in the reef during the day, and definitely at night.  If the tank is not suitably aquascaped the trigger may be merely "resting" on the bottom of the tank>> He is still eating well (They get frozen shrimp, the cubed kind once a day, and Formula 2 the blue-green algae variety flakes twice daily). <<Do look in to obtaining some New Life Spectrum Marine pellets and a frozen "Angel" food formulated specifically for their care.  Feed these AND the frozen shrimp, with the flakes, twice daily>> His color has faded a bit, but he doesn't have any spot or slime on him, and he hasn't rearranged the tank in a while- he used to do that all the time.  I read one of your entries about one having similar behavior in a 20 gallon tank, and you said the tank was too small but I don't think that is the case here- the tank is 200 gallons. <<Agreed...but that doesn't mean there aren't more/other environmental factors at play here...such as water chemistry or the "design" of the tank itself>> Could he be malnourished or ill? <<Maybe...the trigger needs several small feedings of meaty foods daily.  The Spectrum pelleted food and the frozen shrimp fed at least twice a day will help.  For even better nourishment of ALL the fish, consider getting/soaking the food in Selcon and/or Vita-Chem a couple times a week>> And is there some product or variety of food I should tell my boss to get for him? <<Ah yes!...as explained>> Cordially, Jane <<I want to help Jane, do write back if you need further clarification on anything...and try to give me as much information about the system as you can (filtration/maintenance/aquascaping (or lack of), etc.).  Regards, Eric Russell>> Re: Questionable Aquarium Service...Trying To Do What's Needed -- 10/11/06 Dear Eric, <<Hello Jane>> I just wanted to thank you for your excellent advice. <<Was my pleasure to provide>> It has been about two weeks since you emailed me with the suggestions.  We invested in New Life Spectrum Marine Pellets, and we also purchased a lot more coral decorations to go on the live rock. <<This pelleted food is an excellent staple for your fish>> We hired a company to change out the coral and clean the tank/maintain the filtration system every two weeks. <<Excellent...but I do hope you/someone 'monitors' the tank on a daily basis>> They have been instructed to bring in lots of smaller shells and other such toys for the occupants. <<Mmm...do be careful not to create detritus traps>> Our Bluethroat Triggerfish has perked up considerably; I think he may have been suffering from boredom. <<Indeed...these are intelligent and personable fish...and somewhat 'shy' at times.  It's never good to place fish in a 'plain glass box' devoid of proper structure/hiding places...is very stressful>> All the fish seem to be a little brighter and a lot more active. <<Good signs>> Thanks again for your excellent advice and support. <<I'm glad it proved useful...thank you for the follow-up>> Peace and Blessings, Jane <<Regards, EricR>>
Crosshatch Trigger fading? 9/26/07 What's up guys and gals? Just wanted to drop a line regarding the crosshatch trigger. I'm interested in this fish for an upcoming 10 foot long reef tank I am planning. However, I had planned on keeping a pair, but I feel that they would be lacking space, so to my question, does a male crosshatch trigger's color fade if he is not in the presence of a female? <Not much, but some, yes> From every personal documentation of crosshatch triggers in home aquariums I've read that pairs never exhibit any courting or interactions other than just merely putting up with each other's presence. If this is the case, I might just get a male. Thanks for any help you can offer, Nick <Or even a small school if there's room... Xanthichthys spp. live in shoals in the wild. Bob Fenner>

Re: Crosshatch Trigger fading?  9/27/07 Thank you for the reply Mr. Fenner! Just a quick follow up, if I were to do multiple crosshatches, would it need to be set up as a harem or would multiple males get along together? Not sure if I'd go this route, but I'm curious. Thanks again! <A mix of sexes would be fine to excellent here... Just try to find/start them small-ish... four-five inches if possible. Have seen X. mento in very large aggregations in the wild... BobF>

Triggerfishes for  Marine Aquariums

Diversity, Selection & Care

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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

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