A Toxic Saddled Puffer

Canthigaster valentini

A saddled puffer (Canthigaster valentin), also known as the valentinni’s sharpnose puffer or black saddled toby, photographed while scuba diving off the coast of Dar es Salaam. Saddled puffers inhabit rocky and coral reefs throughout the tropical and subtropical waters of the Indian Ocean, Read Sea and Pacific Ocean.

The fish can be identified by its four distinct black stripes (saddles) on its back. The head is blue-grey and the main body is white speckled with blue-grey spots. The tail and fins show hints of yellow and there is a rainbow streak of color behind the eyes.

Saddled puffers are highly poisonous and are occasionally found in schools together with Paraluteres prionurus, a non-toxic filefish which has evolved to mimic the very toxic saddled puffer for protection against predators.

Photo shot with a Sony DSC-RX100M II Camera in a Nauticam housing with a INON S-2000 Strobe and a hand-mounted SOLA 2100 Video Light.

About The Author

Profile photo of Ulric Charteris

Scuba diver, underwater photographer and creative

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