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Species: Sphoeroides annulatus, Bullseye puffer

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wide & convex between eyes
back: 2 pale ovals, outer one with straight front
snout > distance eye to gill opening

Sphoeroides annulatus (Jenyns, 1842)

Bullseye puffer

Body relatively elongate, the depth 25-33% of SL; head large, blunt; snout length greater than distance between eye and gill opening; wide and convex between eyes; nasal organ on each side a short papilla with 2 small holes at end; eyes high on sides of head; jaws are a strong beak composed of 4 fused heavy powerful teeth with a central suture on each jaw; a slit-like gill opening in front of the pectoral fin base; a single short- based dorsal fin at rear of body; a similar-shaped anal fin with origin under or behind last few dorsal rays; dorsal and anal fins 6-9; no pelvic fins; no spines in the fins; tail fin edge usually straight to convex, with 10 main rays; tough scaleless skin,small spines on head and body, none on tail base or before nostrils.

Blackish to olive brown on upper half, white below narrow white to yellow lines, bars, and oblique bands on head and back, with a double concentric oval on top of back, with  a narrow, pale, straight cross-bar across the front of the outer oval and 2 more behind, on tail base; head, sides and upper back, with numerous small dark spots; iris yellow.

Size: to 48 cm.

Common on rocky reefs and adjacent sand patches, often seen in midwater high off the bottom or at the surface.

Depth: 1-105 m.

Southern California to the Gulf of California to Peru, including Galapagos.

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  • Freshwater
  • Marine
  • Brackish
  • Inshore Only
  • Inshore
Water Column Position
  • Bottom
  • Bottom only
  • Mud
  • Soft bottom (mud/sand/gravel/beach/estuary/mangrove/seagrass)
  • Estuary
  • Sand & gravel
  • Soft bottom only
  • Reef associated (reef + edges-water column & soft bottom)
  • Mangrove
  • Freshwater
FishBase Habitat
  • Reef Associated
Feeding Group
  • No Data
  • Carnivore
  • Data
  • Mobile benthic gastropods/bivalves
  • Octopus/squid/cuttlefish
  • Mobile benthic crustacea (shrimps/crabs)
Egg Type
  • No data
  • Benthic
  • Pelagic larva
Global Endemism
  • East Pacific endemic
  • Tropical Eastern Pacific (TEP) endemic
  • All species
Regional Endemism
  • Continent + Island (s)
  • All species
  • Continent
  • Island (s)
  • TEP endemic
  • Resident
Climate Zone
  • Northern Subtropical (Cortez Province + Sinaloan Gap)
  • North Temperate (Californian Province &/or Northern Gulf of California)
  • Equatorial (Costa Rica to Ecuador + Galapagos, Clipperton, Cocos, Malpelo)
  • South Temperate (Peruvian Province )
  • Northern Tropical (Mexican Province to Nicaragua + Revillagigedos)
IUCN Red List
  • Least concern
  • Listed
  • Not listed
Length Max
  • 48
Depth Range Min
  • 1
Depth Range Max
  • 105