Environmental Biology of Fishes

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 249–257 | Cite as

Lek-like spawning, parental care and mating periodicity of the triggerfishPseudobalistes flavimarginatus (Balistidae)

  • William Gladstone
Full paper


The triggerfishPseudobalistes flavimarginatus has a lek-like spawning system at Yonge Reef, Great Barrier Reef. Males migrate to a traditional mating ground where they establish territories enclosing nest sites and egg chambers. Females arrive several days later and choose a male for mating. There is biparental care of the fertilized eggs and a strict division of labour. Females appeared to be confined to the nest site by the male. Mating was semi-lunar: eggs were observed in nests several days before the new and full moons on days when high tide occurred near sunset. Differences were observed in the spawning system of another triggerfish (P. fuscus) between the Great Barrier Reef and the Red Sea. Observations of another triggerfish (Balistoides viridescens) are also reported.

Key words

Coral reef fishes Courtship Lunar cycle Reproduction Migration Territoriality Nests Eggs 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • William Gladstone
    • 1
  1. 1.Great Barrier Reef Marine Park AuthorityTownsvilleAustralia

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