Sony F-717 digital
9.7mm at f4
1/200 at ISO 100

Gosh, that was easy

Here we have another species of puffer fish, a Striped Burrfish (Chilomycterus schoepfi). And in fact, it wasn't until I was researching Latin names for this gallery that I finally found out exactly what species this was.

Slightly larger and broader than the Southern Puffer Fish, the Striped Burrfish is even slower swimming, almost clumsy, and also able to be herded very easily by simply heading them off when you're wading in shallow water. This one, my first catch, I simply coaxed towards shore, and when I finally got it in water so shallow that it wasn't even completely submerged, I flipped it gently onto the bank with my foot, whereupon it inflated nicely for me.

The spines are sharp, but handling gently doesn't produce any harm. I have to wonder about them, though, since bird species tend to swallow fish headfirst, so it doesn't seem like backward-facing spines would do much. The mouth also doesn't possess the sharp 'beak' of the Southern Puffers.

A couple of quick detail photos later, I let my subject go, where it bobbed atop the water for a few moments until its bladder deflated, then it submerged and headed for deeper water.