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Diodontidae
PORCUPINEFISHES BURRFISHES
Porcupinefishes

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Chilomycterus antennatus
© Copyright Andy Arrison, 2006 · 0
Chilomycterus antennatus
Chilomycterus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Chilomycterus

Chilomycterus reticulatus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Chilomycterus reticulatus
Chilomycterus reticulatus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Chilomycterus reticulatus

Cyclichthys
© Copyright John Rangall, 2006 · 0
Cyclichthys
Cyclichthys spilostylus
© Copyright John Rangall, 2006 · 0
Cyclichthys spilostylus

Diodon
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Diodon
Diodon holocanthus
© Copyright Gerald Allen, 2006 · 0
Diodon holocanthus

Diodon hystrix
© Copyright Roger Steene, 2006 · 0
Diodon hystrix
Diodon eydouxii
© Copyright Photographer/SFTEP, 2002 · 0
Diodon eydouxii

Diodon holocanthus
© Copyright Roger Steene, 2006 · 0
Diodon holocanthus
Diodontidae
© Copyright Roger Steene, 2006 · 0
Diodontidae
español

Overview
Main identification features
  • body and head - large spines
  • large eyes
  • dorsal and anal finsposterior
  • strong beak
  • no pelvics
FAMILY DIODONTIDAE

PORCUPINEFISHES, BURRFISHES, BALLOANFISHES

Porcupinefishes are similar to puffers (Tetraodontidae) in form and habits, but have the added protection of formidable sharp spines on the head and body. These spines are either fixed and immovable as in Chilomycterus or erectile as in Diodon. Diodontids differ further from puffers in having broader pectoral fins, lacking a suture in the middle of the top and bottom parts of the strong beak, and in having larger eyes. These fishes are mainly nocturnal, usually hiding in caves or beneath ledges during the day. Their strong tooth plates and powerful jaws are well adapted for crushing urchins, molluscs, and crabs. They can also cause tetraodontoxin poisoning, but less frequently than puffers. Care should be exercised when handling these fishes because of their sharp spines and painful bite.

The family occurs worldwide in tropical seas and contains 19 species in six genera. In our region there are 4 circumtropical and one Indo-Pacific species from three genera.


References
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  • Fowler, H.W., 1916., Cold-Blooded Vertebrates from Costa Rica and the Canal Zone., Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Phila., 68:389-414.
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  • Galván-Magaña, F., Abitia-Cárdenas, L.A., Rodríguez-Romero, J., Pérez-España, H., Chávez-Ramos, H., 1996., Systematics list of the fishes from Cerralvo island, Baja California Sur, Mexico., Ciencias Marinas, 22:295-311.
  • Galván-Magaña, F., Gutiérrez-Sánchez, F., Abitia-Cárdenas, L.A., Rodríguez-Romero, J., 2000., The distribution and affinities of the shore fishes of the Baja California Sur lagoons. In Aquatic Ecosystems of Mexico: Status and Scope. Eds. M. Manuwar, S.G. Lawrence, I.F. Manuwar & D.F. Malley. Ecovision World Monograph Series., Backhuys Publishers:383-398.
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  • Lopez , M. I. and Bussing, W. A., 1982., Lista provisional de los peces marinos de la Costa Rica., Revista de Biologia Tropical, 30(1):5-26.
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  • Ricker, K.E., 1959., Mexican shore and pelagic fishes collected from Acapulco to Cape San Lucas during the 1957 cruise of the "Marijean"., Univ. Brit. Columbia Inst. Fish., Mus. Contrib., 3:18pp.
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Acknowledgements

I thank Ashley MacDonald and John Pickering, University of Georgia, for technical support in building this page.


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