Xanthichthys sp. “dorsopunctatus” is an unusual triggerfish species which we have been researching for the better part of a year and half since we first encountered a specimen at a House of Fins in Greenwich CT. Last week Quality Marine posted that they had a specimen of this fish which so far is only being collected from Christmas Island. Although QM states that this is the first one they’ve seen in 5 years, their specimen is actually the 5fth that we have documented over the last 15 months. Last year Richard Pyle wrote an article about some deep diving he and Brian Greene did around Christmas Island, precisely where this new triggerfish is being collected. During their Xmas Island diving they captured a specimen of triggerfish (pictured at right) like the one in question and they called it a new species. Like some other aquarist, we first believed this fish to be a hybrid cross involving at least Xanthichthys lineopunctatus or the female thereof, but If Pyle and Greene say this is a new species then we’ll take the ichthyologist’s word for it. Moreover, if this fish was a hybrid we would expect to see a lot more variation in it’s appearance and a whole lot more intermediates of color and pattern. So far the 5 specimens we have seen have been very consistent in appearance which leads us to agree with Pyle and Greene that this fish is indeed a new species. We have taken the liberty of giving this fish the provisional name of X. sp. “dorsopunctatus” because the pattern of spots on the top of the body is the most notable feature of this species and it is very possible that this is the latin name that will be used to describe this species. Huge thanks to Rob Mougey for discussing at length this fish with us, including a specimen that lives in his collection. Follow the break for a video of the new Xanthichthys triggerfish species from Christmas Island.