During a family visit to the Georgia Aquarium last weekend, for no particular reason I started wondering if they might have a clown triggerfish on the premises. Clown triggerfish are part jaguar, part piranha, and part Peter Max—among the most colorful and striking of all animals.
Eventually I asked a docent in the Tropical Diver exhibit if there were any triggerfish around (leaving off the word ‘clown’ so as not to appear star-crossed with only the most beautiful fish). He was very knowledgeable—probably a professor or teacher of marine biology just gazing at beautiful fish and waiting for someone to ask a question. He led me around the exhibit, describing the three triggerfish they had (no clowns), where they normally hang out, their swimming patterns, and a whole host of interesting fish facts. He said there was a triggerfish in the surf above our heads (go figure), and if we were patient the fish would eventually come into full view. It did, he spotted it, and let me know right away so I could get a couple of pictures. Then he said, “The evolution of their tails is really quite interesting.” Continue reading