|Rare Catch Fuels Global Warming Debate|
They have not been seen in Scottish waters for years...but fisherman Peter Braham has caught two trigger fish in as many weeks just offshore from Oban.
Trigger fish are generally found in warmer waters closer to the Mediterranean, and their sudden appearance off the Scottish west coast could be yet more evidence of global warming, experts say.
The latest dinner-plate sized specimen is alive and well and recuperating in the quarantine tank at the Scottish SEA LIFE Sanctuary where it will shortly go on public display.
"They're amazing fish, called trigger fish because they like to back themselves into tight crevices and then fasten themselves in with a dorsal fin that locks just like a trigger," said curator Mark Hind.
"That makes is impossible for any predator to drag them out," he added.
A keen angler himself and active member of the Scottish Sea Angling Conservation Network, Mark has never come across one himself or even heard of one being caught in all his time fishing in Scottish waters.
"Unseasonal warm sea temperatures, perhaps coupled with a breeding boom in their native seas closer to the equator, could have brought large numbers of trigger fish to Scotland," said Mark.
"If Peter of any other fishermen come across them we'd welcome a couple more to join our display residents," he said.
Trigger fish have powerful beak-like jaws with which they prey on small crabs and shellfish.
The silvery grey European trigger fish is one of literally dozens of species found in all the world's oceans, many of them - like the Picasso and Clown triggerfish favoured by home aquarists - spectacularly colourful.
Issued by The Scottish SEA LIFE Sanctuary|
For more details, please contact Alex Blackman on 01631 720386
Press Release date: 20th October 2009
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