Diodon liturosus Shaw, 1804
Blackblotched porcupinefish

Like Diodon hystrix, this species is able to take in water and puff itself into a tight ball covered with hard, sharp spines that extend straight out when the animal inflates. It literally becomes a ball of spikes, which one would think would be very hard to swallow. Its teeth are fused into strong beaks capable of breaking up crabs and seashells. The beak could also take a nasty bite out of a diver if handled carelessly.

The one below has inflated, showing the covering of sharp spines.

The one in the two photos below was resting in a sand bottom ledge on the steep seaward reef during the day.

Created 22 October 2010
Updated 30 December 2011

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