Ocean Triggerfish – Canthidermis sufflamen

The Ocean Triggerfish, also known as Turbot or Ocean Tally, is a species in the order of the Tetraodontiformes and thus belongs to the superclass of the bony fish.

Ocean Triggerfish - Canthidermis sufflamen Osteichthyes bony fish diving canary islands species atlantic ocean
Ocean Triggerfish – Canthidermis sufflamen


Canthidermis sufflamen has an oval, laterally, strongly compressed body. Its colour is quite uniform grey. Sometimes it has white scars. At the base of the lateral fin, it has a thick, brown spot. Its lips are thick and often one can see the big teeth of the Ocean Triggerfish. The eyes of Canthidermis sufflamen are prominent and black.

Above all its back and anterior fins are strongly pronounced. On his forehead it has a horn which it can erect or retract.

It reaches a maximum size of 65cm.

Habitat and Distribution

The Ocean Triggerfish is found over rocky reefs, mostly on steep walls, outside reefs or in open water, at depths of up to 60m.

When diving in the Canary Islands you can find them more frequently on the small eastern islands of La Palma, La Gomera and El Hierro than on the large western islands of Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura and Lanzarote.

It is also found in the eastern Atlantic around the islands of St. Paul’s Rock, Saint Helena, Cape Verde, Madeira, São Tomé and Ascension. In the western Atlantic you can see it from Canada, along the coast of the USA, across Bermuda, the Bahamas, the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean Sea and Trinidad.


The Ocean Triggerfish lives solitaire or in loose groups of up to 50 fishes. I’ve always seen it solitaire.

They feed on crustaceans, echinoderms, Cnidaria, molluscs and invertebrates.

Related Posts