Porcupine fish are poor swimmers so they use other ways to protect themselves from predators.
They get caught in the currents easily, which may be why they are found all over the world.
Also known as "blow fish," "toad fish" or "pufferfish," porcupine fish are an expensive delicacy in Japan despite the possibility of death from its toxins. The eyes and many internal organs of a porcupine fish are filled with high levels of this toxin.
Also known as “blow fish,” “toad fish” or “pufferfish,” porcupine fish are an expensive delicacy in Japan despite the possibility of death from its toxins. The eyes and many internal organs of a porcupine fish are filled with high levels of this toxin.
There are porcupine fish everywhere in waters surrounding Boca Grande. If you have never caught one or seen one up close, try to do so - with care. When this fish feels danger it unveils the long poisonous spikes covering its body. If you catch one of these unique fish do not touch them or their poisonous spikes. Use a hook extractor when possible to release these fish.
The porcupine fish will rapidly inflate itself to surprise and scare off predators. If this defense mechanism does not work they rely on the deadly toxin they carry.
Porcupine fish use gills to breath. As water passes over their gills oxygen is absorbed into the bloodstream. They can blink their or close their eyes - a characteristic shared with the shark.
Merry Beth Ryan, a member of the Florida Outdoor Writers Association, can be reached at www.merrybethryanphotography.com, by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone (941) 544-5023.
They have a small mouth and a tube-shaped body with teeth they use to crush what they eat. Porcupine fish eat a variety of plants and animals - mainly algae that grows on the rocks. They will also feed on sea urchins, sponges and small crustaceans.
Many predators seek the porcupine fish despite its toxic spikes. But even if a predator can eat a porcupine fish it usually is killed itself by the toxins in the spikes. Only larger sharks can eat the porcupine fish without dying.
Most Boca Grande Pass anglers have caught at least one porcupine fish. They are a great hit with the kids fishing on the boat with you. Children love watching the fish blow up right before their eyes. When first shown what these fish are capable of doing, I can remember the day like it was yesterday. How amazed I was that this fish was able to blow itself up like a balloon.
Porcupine fish are a popular aquarium fish, too. They can be tame but are too poisonous to be hand fed. They make a great conversation piece. Until you have seen one blow themselves up with your own eyes you might not be a believer. Next time you are out fishing be on the lookout for this wonderful species of fish.