|Blue Throat Trigger Fish, Blue Jaw Trigger Fish, Gilded Trigger Fish, Blue Chin Trigger Fish
|Up to 11.8 inches
|X. auromarginatus has an oval shaped, laterally flat body that is a bluish-gray color with white scale spots. There are bright metallic blue rings around the eyes. The males can be differentiated by the yellow outline on the fins and tail as well as the distinctive bright blue splash across the jaw and throat. The male’s coloration becomes more dramatic with age.
|From the Indo-Pacific, East Africa, and the Hawaiian Islands, to the north as far as Ryukyus and South to the Cocos-Keeling Atoll and New Caldonia.
|X. auromarginatus tend to form loose groups often located near drop-offs and ledges a few meters from the bottom.
|In the wild these fish feed primarily on zoo-plankton, consisting mainly of copepods. In captivity they usually adapt quite easily to standard aquarium fare. They are quite accustomed to the idea that food should be floating in the water, as they find much of their food the same way in the wild. Feed a balanced diet including flake, pellets, frozen meaty foods, and herbivorous foods.
(1 = easy - 5 = hard)
|I rate this fish a "1." This fish is suitable for the beginner aquarist. As with all fish selections make sure the fish is in good flesh, eating vigorously, and alert before purchase.
(1 = shy - 5 = nasty)
|I rate this fish a “3.” Although considered a mild mannered trigger fish, they can become aggressive to tank mates. They tend to become bolder with age and size.
|While these fish are quite hardy they still appreciate excellent water quality. Standard reef tank parameters are optimal. A tank of at least 90 gallons with live rock and several hiding places large enough to accommodate this fish is best. A secure top is recommended because when startled, these fish are excellent jumpers. I recommend purchasing a juvenile fish as they tend to acclimate faster to aquarium life than the often shy adult fish. In larger aquaria these fish can be kept in small groups consisting of one male and several females.
|I found that this fish relishes seaweed sheets and devours them vigorously.
|Reef Tank Compatibility:
|This fish is low risk to a reef tank inhabitants and generally considered reef safe. There have been several reports of larger X. auromarginatus eating hermit crabs, snails, and small shrimp. Those critters are not their preferred diet, so keep them well fed to minimize exploratory feeding behavior. Larger specimens may occasionally knock over corals and rockwork.
|X. auromarginatus, like other trigger fishes, can hold its dorsal spines erect and use them to lock itself into the rockwork making it virtually impossible to remove. They usually sleep locked into the rock in a favorite hiding place.
When X. auromarginatus gets excited it can generate a grunting or popping sound that can be heard outside of the fish tank. They often make this sound frantically when out of the water.
Always cover an aquarium that is home to X. auromarginatus. They are notorious jumpers.
| Further Reading:
|Fishbase.org - Xanthichthys auromarginatus
Reefkeeping Magazine - Triggering a Response From Guests:
The Genus Xanthichthys