Honeycomb Cowfish

Honeycomb Cowfish Anguilla
Stuart Wynne 20th August 2016 No Comments

A member of the boxfish family, the Honeycomb Cowfish (Acanthostracion polygonius) is a relatively common sight on reef areas around Anguilla. With its big lips and chilled out nature this is probably one of the cutest fish species you are likely to encounter while diving or snorkeling. The juvenile phase is bright orange with its head seeming to dominate its overall body plan thus resembling a swimming face (may be affectionately referred to as a ‘pea fish’). Quite a strange sight if you are lucky enough to spot one this size. The cowfish can be distinguished from trunkfish (also a member of the boxfish family) by two spines, one above each eye, that resemble horns and thus give it its common name. It can be further differentiated from the one other species of cowfish present here, the Scrawled Cowfish (A. quadricornis), by its very obvious name-sake honeycomb patterning formed by its hexagonal body plates.

Originally posted on Instagram @sea_anguilla with the text: Honeycomb Cowfish photographed close to Anguillita. This chilled out species of boxfish, known locally as a shellfish due to their ridged exterior, can take a sudden turn of speed when startled and change colour rapidly to air their disdain.

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