Bluechin Triggerfish

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Xanthichthys auromarginatus - (Bennett, 1832)
Bluechin Triggerfish

Xanthichthys auromarginatus.jpg

In full color an exceptionally beautiful species and one of the less belligerent triggerfishes. Scott W. Michael


This personable triggerfish is bold and beautiful and can even be kept in a reef tank. It often becomes a favorite pet. A male and female can be kept in the same tank (females lack the blue patch on the chin). It is not a threat to corals, but may eat ornamental shrimps.

Family: Balistidae

Other common name(s):

  • Crosshatch Triggerfish

Native range:

Habitat: Reef or reef-sand interface. Provide several suitable hiding places, as well as plenty of swimming room.

Maximum length: 22 cm (9 in)

Minimum aquarium size: 285 L (75 gal)

Water: Marine 24 °C (75 °F) - 28 °C (82 °F)

General swimming level: All levels.


Omnivore. Feed meaty and algae-based foods several times a day.

Aquarium Compatibility

This is one of the better-behaved triggerfishes. It can be kept with fish tankmates of similar size and can even be housed with smaller fishes (the latter should be added to the tank first). If it gets too hungry, however, it may attempt to intercept and eat more diminutive fish tankmates. It is likely to be bullied by more aggressive triggerfishes, but can usually hold its own with most other tankmates.


Demersal (on or near the bottom) spawners that tend and protect their broods.


While it tends to be reclusive when first added to the tank, this triggerfish soon learns to associate the aquarist with food. Many individuals will beg for food at the front of the tank and may even spit water at the aquarium top or out of the tank (be sure these jets of water cannot reach electrical outlets). On rare occasions, it may jump from an open tank.

Reference: 101 Best Saltwater Fishes
Image credit: SWM
Text credit: SWM

See Profile of a reef aquarium with a large Xanthichthys mento (Crosshatch Triggerfish).