Black Trigger - South Asia

Melichthys niger

(1 Reviews)

Black Trigger - South Asia

Black Trigger - South Asia

Melichthys niger

(1 Reviews)

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Black Trigger - South Asia Care Facts

Care Level: Easy
Temperament: Aggressive
Diet: Carnivore
Reef Safe: No
Minimum Tank Size: 125 Gallons
Max Size: 7.5 inches
The Black Trigger, Melichthys niger, is also known as the Black Triggerfish, Hawaiian Black Triggerfish, Indian Trigger, and Black-Finned Triggerfish. A tank with rocks and caves will provide an idea habitat, however it is known  to move the rocks around the tank to it's ideal taste. These fish are not reef safe as they will munch on corals and invertebrates in your tank, so they are best suited for FOWLR tanks.

Keeping the Black Triggerfish (Melichthys niger) in Your Saltwater Marine Aquarium

The Black Triggerfish, scientifically known as Melichthys niger, is a captivating addition to your saltwater marine aquarium. This informative product description will provide essential information for hobbyists and potential buyers about keeping the Black Triggerfish.

Black Triggerfish Habitat

The Black Triggerfish, scientifically known as Melichthys niger, is a captivating addition to your saltwater marine aquarium. This informative product description will provide essential information for hobbyists and potential buyers about keeping the Black Triggerfish.

Reef Compatibility of Black Triggerfish

The Black Triggerfish is not considered reef-safe due to its natural foraging behavior. These fish may disturb corals and invertebrates, making them better suited for fish-only or fish-only-with-live-rock (FOWLR) setups.

Size and Lifespan of Black Triggerfish

In captivity, Black Triggerfish can grow up to 20 inches (50 cm) in length, making them one of the larger species. They have a relatively long lifespan, typically ranging from 10 to 15 years with proper care.

Diet in Captivity

These triggerfish are omnivorous and have diverse dietary preferences. They readily accept high-quality marine pellets, frozen foods, and live or frozen seafood. Maintaining a balanced diet is essential to ensure their health and vibrancy.

Aquaculture and Availability

While Black Triggerfish are not aquacultured, they are occasionally available to hobbyists through reputable suppliers and online retailers like as wild-caught specimens.

Compatibility with Other Fish and Invertebrates

Black Triggerfish can be territorial and occasionally aggressive, especially when they feel threatened or while establishing their territory. Selecting compatible tankmates is essential to minimize potential conflicts. Suitable tankmates may include large angelfish, butterflyfish, and certain tang species.

Sexual Dimorphism

Black Triggerfish do not exhibit significant sexual dimorphism, making it challenging to visually distinguish between males and females based on their external characteristics.

Juvenile to Adult Coloration Changes

Juvenile Black Triggerfish typically display a striking coloration, including black bodies with bright white lines and patterns. As they mature into adults, their coloration tends to become more subdued, with fewer patterns and a more solid black appearance.


The Black Triggerfish is known for its territorial and sometimes aggressive nature. Providing sufficient hiding spots and territories within the aquarium can help mitigate aggression, creating a more balanced environment.

Tank Requirements

To ensure the well-being of your Black Triggerfish, you will need an aquarium with a minimum capacity of 125 gallons (550 liters) or larger due to their size. These fish require ample swimming space, hiding spots, and the freedom to establish territories.

Water Conditions

Maintaining stable water conditions is vital for the health of your Black Triggerfish. Here are the recommended parameters:

  • pH: 8.1 to 8.4
  • Salinity: 1.020 to 1.025
  • Water Temperature: 76 to 82°F (24 to 28°C)

Adequate water flow is recommended, replicating the natural current of their native habitat.

Common Names

The Black Triggerfish is also known by various common names, including the Hawaiian Black Triggerfish, Black Durgeon, and Black-Finned Triggerfish.

Five Compatible Tank Mates

  • Emperor Angelfish (Pomacanthus imperator): Ideal for larger tanks, these stunning angelfish can coexist with Black Triggerfish.
  • Naso Tang (Naso lituratus): A beautiful tang species that complements the Black Triggerfish in larger aquariums.
  • Butterflyfish (Chaetodontidae family): Some butterflyfish species can be suitable tankmates, provided they are compatible in terms of size and temperament.
  • Surgeonfish (Acanthuridae family): Certain surgeonfish, like the Sohal Tang (Acanthurus sohal), can coexist with Black Triggerfish in larger setups.
  • Large Angelfish (Various species): Some large angelfish species are compatible if the tank is sufficient.

Why Choose the Black Triggerfish from is a reputable source for obtaining marine fish and invertebrates for your aquarium. They are known for their rigorous care and quarantine practices, ensuring that the fish they provide are healthy and disease-free. When you purchase a Black Triggerfish from, you can have confidence in the quality of your new marine addition, knowing that it will thrive in your aquarium.

This trigger took about 5 days to warm up to everyone, but was always a good eater. He is in a tank with a porcupine puffer and a fox face, all doing great. Saltwaterfish is a go to place for great additions to my tanks. You rock!!!

Reviewed by: John Reilly on Dec. 7, 2019

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