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tobyWhitespotted Toby
Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Subphylum: Vertebrata Class: Actinopterygii Order: Perciformes Family: Tetraodontidae Genus: Canthigaster Species: jactator
Scientific name: Canthigaster jactator
Common name: Whitespotted toby or sharp-nosed pufferfish
Hawaiian name: None

These tiny pufferfish are widely distributed in the Pacific to the Hawaiian Islands. They are the commonest of the tobies and are found nearly everywhere during the day near the sea floor foraging over sand, rock and rubble. At night they can be found tucked away in cracks, in caves and on rocks.

Tobies are usually found in pairs. While the females can become distended with eggs during the breeding season the two featured in this photo are probably bloated because they are packed with parasitic worms called nematodes.

Whitespotted tobies have been recorded eating a wide variety of foods including sponges, algae, detritus, tunicates, polychaetes, bryozoans, sea urchins, brittle stars, crabs, peanut worms, shrimps, zoanthids, fishes, amphipods and foraminiferans. In Turtle Reef 3D, tobies can be seen on several occasions plucking dead skin off resting turtles.

[Back to Reef Species Guide]