Q:

Is there a fish called the humuhumunukunukuapua?

A:

Quick Answer

The humuhumu-nukunuku-?-pua‘a, or humuhumu for short, is the Hawaiian name for the reef triggerfish. The name means "triggerfish with a pig-like snout." It is the official state fish of Hawaii.

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Is there a fish called the humuhumunukunukuapua?
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Full Answer

The reef triggerfish grows to a length of 10 inches. It has a bright body of tan and yellow with dark bands and blue lips. It has powerful jaws and sharp teeth. Most often found in shallow coral reefs, it feeds on crustaceans, snails, brittle stars, sea urchins, worms and algae. It has the ability to spit water or sand from its mouth to locate hidden invertebrates on the sea floor. When it is in danger, the reef triggerfish wedges itself into holes or crevices and locks itself into place with its fins. It also makes grunting sounds when pursued by predators, possibly to warn other triggerfish in the area.

Reef triggerfish can be kept in aquariums, but they need large tanks of 75 to 140 gallons with plenty of hiding places. Because they are territorial, only one can be kept in a tank. They can be fed either live or frozen food, including shrimp, squid, mussels, starfish, sea urchins and small fish. Though they attack smaller fish and crustaceans, they can be kept with large fish such as groupers, bass, lionfish, surgeonfish and eels.

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