Dogface Puffer Fish (Arothron nigropunctatus)
The Dogface Puffer Fish is also known as the Black-spotted Puffer. These unique creatures are found throughout the Pacific Ocean and Indian Ocean. They thrive along reefs, lagoon patch reefs and reef faces at depths of 10 to 85 feet.
It has a round shape with a head and snout which at times looks like a seal or a dog. It can come in a variety of colors, although most commonly blue or gray overall, with brown on the chin and a white band just below the eyes. There is also a lemon-colored puffer fish that is mostly bright yellow with a gray back. The distinctive identifying item are the black spots. These animals reach a maximum length of about 33cm. In order to ward off potential enemies, they can inflate their bodies by swallowing air or water.
The Dogface Puffer feeds on algae, corals, sponges, sea squirts, crustaceans and molluscs. Puffer fish are also opportunistic and many species will feed on sick, dying or distressed fish. These fish have continuous growing teeth, but are usually worn down by the corals it chews on. In captivity, these growing teeth can become nonfunctional, if this fish does not have adequate opportunity to wear these teeth down.
Like most puffers, black-spotted puffers are highly poisonous, making them dangerous or even deadly to eat. These creatures are the second most poisonous creature in the world, the first being the Golden Poison Frog.
Information courtesy of wikipedia.com/wiki/blackspotted_puffer, fishchannel.com
Photo courtesy of marineaquariumsa.com