Species Worldwide: 40 (11 genera)
Species In Hawaii: 11
Endemic species in Hawaii: xxx
This family is most commonly found in the Indo-Pacific. The distinct first dorsal spine can be locked in an erect position. If the fish is threatened or caught it can raise the dorsal spine and can lock itself in cracks or crevices in the reef to prevent it from being pulled out. The balistid fish usually swim by undulating movements of the second dorsal and anal fin. The tail is used occasionally for rapid short movements. Triggerfish have the ability to use their swim bladder to produce a grunting sound that you can hear when diving on the reef. The very famous fish with the long Hawaiian name (the state fish of Hawaii: Humuhumunukunuku apua'a, featured above) belongs to this family.