Triggerfish are a family of marine fish comprised of roughly 40 distinct species. They are characterized by their rhomboid shaped, laterally compressed bodies and comparatively large heads. Triggerfish are also equipped with extremely powerful jaws and teeth designed to crush the shells of various species of crustaceans.
Triggerfish get their name from their two dorsal spines, which are locked into place as a defense mechanism against predators. When so erected, the first and larger dorsal spine can only be unlocked by depressing the second, smaller dorsal spine. They are also unique in the fact that they swim primarily by using an undulating motion of their dorsal and anal fins. They are regarded as some of the most fascinating and beautiful species of fish in the modern saltwater aquarium hobby. However, their extremely aggressive temperament requires the care of an experienced aquarist. Most species of triggerfish are vibrantly colored and their bodies are often adorned with complex patterns and markings. They come in shades of orange, yellow, purple, silver, grey, black and white.